In Chapters 8-10, Foster dives deeper into different popular pieces of texts that are often alluded to in literature. These pieces are stories from the Grimm Brothers, Greek and world mythology, and weather. When you hear about a trail of breadcrumbs, you think of the innocent children of Hansel and Gretel. When you hear about a war over beauty, you think of Helen of Troy. When you see dark weather, you think of dark foreshadowing. Although allusions use other pieces of texts, it isn’t used to plagiarize or steal the story of other writing. As Foster writes:
“Rather, we’re trying to make use of details or patterns, portions of some prior story (or, once you really start thinking like a professor, “prior text,” since everything is a text) to add depth and texture to your story, to bring out a theme, to lend irony to a statement, to play with readers’ deeply ingrained knowledge of fairy tales.“
A writer is not able to talk to each reader and compare the characters or events to the experiences of the reader. Therefore, they use other common books so that the reader can make the connection between the emotions experienced in both environments. A good allusion does not depend on the reader understanding the reference in order to understand the story. Instead, the allusion adds depth to the text so that the reader can subconsciously remember the emotions and motives of known story and apply it to the current text. In the story of Everyman, Jesus and Saint Charity are alluded to so that the reader knows this story follows the Christian mythology. The reader can then apply Christian morals and beliefs to the story so that they can see how the message of the play coincides to the church’s teachings.
Source: Foster (8-10)