Notes from the Underground (metaphor analysis)
: The Underground Man sees himself as this creature because of his hyperconsciousness. He likens himself to a mouse because a mouse is the antithesis of a normal man, or bull. While the bull acts on its rather simple mental reasoning, the mouse cannot act because its overly sophisticated mental processes perpetually plague it with doubt and vacillation, rendering it unable to do anything, save 'creep ignominiously back into its mousehole.'
: The wall represents, the Underground Man explains, 'the laws of nature, the conclusions of natural science and mathematics.' The wall also embodies such ideas as evolution, which Dostoevsky largely equated with atheism and socialism. While the man of action readily accepts the wall and its implications, the UM (and Dostoevsky) couldn’t come to grips with the concept of the stone wall, the idea that 'two times two makes four,”'because it makes man out to be an animal -- a mere phenomenon of science, lacking the human component of free will.
posted by Cyndy