But in fact, Hank, the fundamental thing that all critical reading does is reveal to us there are not easy definitions that distinguish us from them. Reading with an eye toward metaphor allows us to become the person we’re reading about while reading about them. That’s why there are symbols in books and why your English teacher deserves your attention.
Ultimately it doesn’t matter if the author intended a symbol to be there because the job of reading is not to understand the author’s intent. The job of reading is to use stories as a way into other people as we see ourselves,and when we do that we can look out at the world and see a giant endless set of beautiful variations of pizzas; the whole world composed of billions of beautiful, delicious pizzas."