By I. Duncan
One of the first serious works on Alice Munro's writing, this research of her brief fiction is trained by way of the disciplines of narratology and literary linguistics. via analyzing Munro's narrative paintings, Isla Duncan demonstrates a wealthy figuring out of the complicated, densely layered, frequently unsettling tales.
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Extra resources for Alice Munro’s Narrative Art
There was never enough hot water for the baby’s wash . . ” Facts are tersely delivered in Changing Perspectives 39 coordinate clauses assembled in chronological sequence, with scarcely any other means of conjunction. With Robert as the subject of the focalization, the flashback ends on a note of speculation about why the marriage ended: “Things happen before he goes . . There’s got to be some wrenching and slashing. But she didn’t say” (pp. 128–29). ”12 The story moves toward a puzzling conclusion, where Robert, still the subject of the focalization, reconsiders Peg’s account of her discovery and ponders on the crucial “discrepancy, a detail, in the midst of so many abominable details” (p.
I haven’t been to see them for a while. ” I said, and she knew then what they had told me. (p. 209) In a gesture of concern, the narrator urges her sister not to feel guilty about how she had treated their mother, but Maddy flippantly dismisses The Confiding First-Person Narrator 25 the possibility of guilt, and swiftly tries to change the subject. This denial is spurious, as the ending of the narrative shows, for as she utters the confession, “I couldn’t go on . . I wanted my life,” she drops the kitchen bowl she is carrying, sending it crashing to the floor.
He was grayhaired, with a square, rather flat face. A broad nose kept him from looking perfectly dignified and handsome. ”9 The passage reads like an account delivered by a well-informed resident of the town, a keen, critical observer of appearances. The “you” is noteworthy, for its use helps to confirm the narrator’s authority. It makes sense to think of the “you” as not the addressee or narratee, but the narrator, choosing the second-person pronoun instead of “me” or “one,” both of which would be inappropriate, the former because the narration is not first person, the latter because “one” is excessively formal.