James and the Giant Peach


Roald Dahl

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James and the Giant Peach: Chapter 15 Summary & Analysis

Out in the garden, Aunt Spiker and Aunt Sponge have just set up for another day of selling tickets to sightseers. Aunt Sponge remarks that James never came back last night. She hopes he fell and broke his neck, while Aunt Spiker says she’ll punish James when he returns. Suddenly, they hear an awful noise and turn around. The peach is rolling right for them. Aunt Spiker and Aunt Sponge scream, panic, and start to run, but they push each other and selfishly only try to save themselves. Aunt Sponge trips over her moneybox and falls, and Aunt Spiker trips over her sister. The peach rolls over them with a sickening crunch, leaving Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spiker flat and dead on the lawn.
Aunt Spiker and Aunt Sponge’s selfishness brings about their deaths—even more confirmation that adults tend to act selfishly, and that this impulse is dangerous and even fatal. Because they have no concept of working together toward a common goal, it’s unthinkable that Aunt Spiker, for instance, might help her sister up. It’s also telling that Aunt Sponge trips over her moneybox: the moneybox symbolizes how she and Spiker tried to corrupt nature and profit off of it—and her death suggests that this was a bad idea.
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