Dramatical Novel


“Eveline” a Short Story by James Joyce Essay

July 16, 2021 by Essay Writer

Updated: Aug 29th, 2020

James Joyce cites that, Eveline Hill is a young woman who is around nineteen years. She sits alongside her window as she waits to leave her place of residence. During this time, she recalls many things surrounding her life that are making or driving her from home. Both her mother, Mrs. Smith, and elder brother, Earnest are dead while the other brother spends most of his time away from home in his church decorating business.

She remembers how Mr. Smith, their father, mistreated her brothers. The story unveils that Eveline had limited loyalty towards the work that she used to do. A brief overview of the story shows that, even though Eveline falls for Frank who is a sailor, she does not accompany him to Buenos Aires just as promised (Joyce 3). This paper will seek to give a critique of Wendy Dennison’s student paper.

Upon reading Wendy Dennison’s paper, it is observable that her paper is strong. To some extent, the reader understands that Wendy’s work possesses a huge grip of expressing ideas, which in turn gives satisfaction. Wendy’s paper has an analysis of the audience that makes it possible for easy message delivery (4). For instance, the paper does not contain difficult words such as protean and epitome. As such, the paper is strong because the choice of words is appropriate and the plot shares qualities of writing that are apparent to fellow classmates as well as the instructor. Additionally, having seen that Wendy knows about “Eveline”, it is truthful to say that she has carried out prewriting exercise.

Literature studies indicate that a strong paper must have a prewriting exercise. Therefore, in this case, Wendy’s paper contains argumentative tactics, valuable word choice, and attitude, which explains more about Eveline’s essential timidity, self-doubt, insecurity, and capacity for her self-deception.

On the other hand, Wendy’s paper needs a bit of polishing because literature writing and understanding involves learning the questions relevant to ask yourself as you write or read. In order to deepen comprehension, the writer or reader must examine and think critically about the components of the work. In this context, critical means the overarching evaluation, synthesis, and inference as well as analysis of all the discerning inquisitions and thoughts (5).

Agreeably, the composition of Wendy’s paper provides unclear inference regarding the implications of certain elements such as tone, structure, and characterization of Eveline’s story. Thus, it is agreeable that Wendy’s paper requires some polishing in order to bring out clarification on synthesis and analysis as well as inference of the plot. Additionally, the discovery and development of ideas bring a sense of obviousness (6). A proper paper must give suspense, which in turn brings about a process of discovering ideas called invention. Inadequate employment of invention is one of the reasons as to why Wendy’s paper needs polishing.


In conclusion, James wrote an enjoyable story about teenage thoughts. He brought out feelings and emotions that cluster many youngsters’ minds. For example, when Eveline heard a bell clang upon her heart, a feeling ran through her heart and she heard Frank say, “come” repeatedly. Arguably, Wendy’s paper is strong as it has some citations quoted directly from James Joyce’s Eveline story. “Look lively” is a quote that urges Miss Hill to loosen up and appear bold in her work (7). Given the fact that Wendy’s paper includes directed freewriting, it becomes solemn to give corrections. This provides room for enhancements.

Works Cited

Joyce, James. “Eveline.” Literature and the Writing Process. Ed. Elizabeth McMahan, Susan X Day, and Robert Funk. 7th ed. Upper Saddle River: Prentice, 2005. Print. 3–7.

This essay on “Eveline” a Short Story by James Joyce was written and submitted by your fellow student. You are free to use it for research and reference purposes in order to write your own paper; however, you must cite it accordingly.

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Life Conflict: “Anna Karenina” by Leo Tolstoy Essay

July 16, 2021 by Essay Writer

Updated: May 30th, 2020

In the ever-memorable epic of a woman in Russian society, trying to achieve self-will, Anna Karenina, is an exemplification of conflicts between the accepted and unaccepted social norms. Anna Karenina is a treatise of conflict between the novel’s commiseration for both the adulterer and the family. Tolstoy, from the very beginning of the novel, is empathetic towards Anna even though he accepts her conduct as sinful, and includes an image of familial life that could prevent it. The problem of adultery of married women gained importance in nineteenth-century novels (for example, Madam Bovary by Gustave Flaubert).

The problem of non-adherence to the conventional role of a married woman becomes a paradigm for the analysis of the problems that are created in interrelated patterns. Tolstoy tried to portray that marriage is a mediator of the social, familial, religious, and transcendental realms. Overall, the story of Anna Karenina is the story of a woman in her twenties who is married to a staunch, boring man and leads a dull life. She falls in love with another man who presents her with the passions of life that marriage failed to provide. The affair diminishes into mere sensuality of relationship, most probably due to its illicit nature.

With heightened sexuality arises insecurity of love. As time passes, Anna becomes more demanding of her lover and feels out of desperation that she will lose her lover. With time, her jealousy thrives more, and she becomes more demanding, in doing so, only driving him further away. Eventually, frustrated with burning jealously and insecurity, Anna commits suicide by throwing himself in front of a train. The novel deals with the conflict of the adulteress who has broken a human and societal code but still gains sympathy from the author and the readers. Marriage was mythologized in Shakespearean drama, while in the nineteenth-century, marriage was the myth that the fictions like Anna Karenina demystified.

Background of Anna Karenina

French literature has been bursting with the theme of adultery since the publication of Les Liaisons Dangeureauses. French proses on adultery influenced the creation of Tolstoy’s love epic. The story drew heavily from French proses and the philosophy of Rousseau. It had been fashioned in European style and had been written as a moral philosophical treatise based on the relation of Karenin, Anna, and Vronskii. Tolstoy presents to the readers an adulterous triangle in Anna, her husband, lover, and the happy marriage of Kitty and Levin. These two marriages, juxtaposed with one another, to demonstrate the Gospels of the sacrament of marriage.

The difference between Tolstoy’s tale of adultery is that the French stories were narrated from the point of view of the deceived husbands. Flaubert wrote Madame Bovary from the perspective of the heroine, which was unlike any other novel dealing with the subject of female adultery (Karpushina 75). However, Tolstoy fathomed prose that incorporated all the subtexts and perspectives.

Family and Marriage

What units constitute a family? What idea of family is expressed in the novel? How does Tolstoy distinguish between a good and a bad family? The presence of family is an essential part of the novel Anna Karenina. The novel begins with Tolstoy’s belvedere on family: “Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way” (Tolstoy 4). Here the word “happy” implies harmonious. Families may be discerned by the problems that they face.

The equation of the families in Tolstoy’s novel is not linear. Not all families that are “good” are not “happy.” For instance, the Sviazhskiis are not “happy” as a family, but their family may be considered “good.” They are childless, but they have a good time. For instance, they are constantly quarreling over the future of Kitty. Kitty’s mother wants to arrange Kitty Vronskii’s marriage, failing to see that it would be a bad match for Kitty as was for Dolly. Kitty’s mother does not see why she was sick, but her father, being an intuitive man, finds the reason. On the insistence of Kitty’s father, she is married to Levin. Hence, we see the Sviazhskiis family comprises of a “good” father and slightly vain mother.

Kitty and Levin to have a good family, but their family is not always bestowed with happiness. Kitty and Levin have a “good” family but the incidents of domestic conflicts based on trifles such, as jealousy does not show the picture of a “happy” family.

In another instance, the childless marriage of the Wendens may apparently seem satisfactory but if they are happy or not is debatable. Lady Wenden is does not discourage the officers to steel fleeting glances at her. Karenin too recollects Darialov’s name as one among the cuckolds of high society. The only family, which can be considered happy in Tolstoy’s novel, is that of the Lavov’s. One reason for this may be the loyalty the spouses hold towards each other that makes their marriage a success. The novel presents a decadence of morality and fidelity from traditional marriage and family. Thus, Tolstoy’s philosophy of a happy family and marriage is predominantly based on the question so loyalty and disloyalty to one’s spouse.

Tolstoy believes a spouse’s infidelity creates a vacuum for the familial life, which corrupts the very essence of marriage. Infidelity leads to impurity in the pedigree of the future generation and imbibes corruption within the familial walls (Karpushina 67). Implicitly, Tolstoy propagates the belief that the characters shown by parents influence the child largely, and therefore, creates a specific view of life in the child. For instance, Levin was an orphan and his parentless formative years left him insecure as an adult. His remembrance of his parents was only through his mother, and hence, he wanted his wife to resemble the image of his mother he had in his mind. Levin’s concept of family is one that Tolstoy propagates.

Kitty belonged to an honorable family, and Levin believed that she was representative of all the values that her family upheld. That is one reason he is dismissive of Vronskii who did not have an illustrious family background. Kitty’s parents are from a well to do society, with great family values and committed to family life. Dolly and Natalie, two of Kitty’s sisters are shows as a model of morality, goodness, and character in the novel. Natalie had a happy marriage (Meyer 211). Dolly’s marriage is not a happy one, which was primarily because of Stiva, her husband’s perfidy.

Here one must understand that Tolstoy makes a clear distinction between happy marriages and happy family. Marriage is entailed only to the relation between the husband and wife, while family has a larger spread, with different units. Incase of Dolly and Stiva it can be observed that Dolly and Stiva had an unsatisfactory married life, however, their family life went on smoothly. On the other hand, a happy family life was not an indication of a happy marriage.

Ancestry and Marriage

The idea of marriage in Tolstoy’s novel is restricted to the relationship between husband and wife. However, unhappiness in married life was restricted to mutual respect and fidelity between couples. An absence of loyalty in a marriage would create unhappy marriages.

To understand the background of the failure of Anna’s marriage one has to go back to the roots of its inception. Her aunt raised Anna. Anna’s aunt was a shrewd woman and she almost manipulated Karenin to marry her niece (Karpushina 72). Another of Anna’s aunt was Princess Varavara. She was shown as a parasite, who spent her life as a poor relation living under the roof of wealthier relatives (Karpushina 81).

Dolly who is demonstrated as the epitome of moral character in the novel scorns her. Apart from this, Tolstoy has spared no other detail regarding Anna’s childhood or ancestry. The only background divulged to judge Anna is that she is Stiva’s sister. Nothing has been told about Anna and Stiva’s parents in the novel. From this one may intuitively conclude that the key to understanding Anna’s character is her relationship with Stiva. Hence, if one understands that Tolstoy wanted to demonstrate the importance of upbringing on moral character as an adult, may be considered as a hint of Anna’s infidelity. However, Anna cannot be solely blamed for the downfall of their marriage (Meyer 208). Karenin, like Anna was orphaned at an early age and was brought up by relatives. Karenin had a brother. He soon after he and Anna were married (Karpushina 83). This sad past left Karenin an isolated heart.

Both Karenin and Vronskii were from descendants of family members who were employed with or were associated with the government office. Karenin’s uncle was a government official and Vronskii father’s social recognition rested on a special distinction received from the higher authorities. However, the difference between the characters of Karenin and Vronskii becomes apparent when the question of honor arises.

Karenin marries Anna for he believes it was his obligation and duty while Vronskii betrays Kitty’s hopes without any scruple (Meyer 210). Further Tostoy stresses on the absence of familial environment during the formative years of Vrinskii’s life to demonstrate the imminent unimportance of family life to him. Vronskii, though was not an orphan until late in life, was not close with his family, nor did he live them. He lived a lonely life with other young officers. He grew up in a military milieu away from the warmth of a family.

On the other extreme is Levin who cannot imagine a life beyond family values. Family holds the most important position in Levin’s heart. Indecency in Vronskii was mostly due to his parentage (Meyer 209).

His father gained his fortune through social climbing while his mother was a woman of easy virtue. This demonstrates that Vronskii was influenced by his lack of family values to have engaged in an affair with a married woman. Though Vronskii loved Anna, knew well that high society will not accept their relation, even if Anna successfully received a divorce from Karenin. He had no real family since childhood, and it is with Anna that he desperately tries to recreate a family. But it becomes a failure because Anna did not reciprocate to his desires for a family and since he did not know how to make one.

In the household of Dolly and Stiva, Dolly maintains the family and the marriage. The reason being she was from a “good” background. However, Anna’s family was doomed to fail as neither Anna nor Karenin had any real family to base their familial model on.

In the end of the novel, after Anna’s death, Vronskii shrugs responsibility of his and Anna’s daughter who is taken in by Karenin. Vronskii forsake his child because he did not want a family. His family line discontinues to absence of anyone to carry his name. On the contrary, Karenin’s name will live as Anna son and daughter will bear that name.

Social Tradition

Society and its code dominate the decorum of the life of the Moscovite high society. Traditions and social discourse dominate the mindset of the people living in the society and they judge people based on the habits that they have learnt. The idea of being upright, moral, honorable were considered assets. Anna, being an adulteress was branded as a “fallen woman”, was rejected by the society.

The novel strenuously interrogates the gender and marital relations based on the traditions and rules constructed by society. The social traditions that have been projected through the novel are basic to the gender roles that are specific to the characters. For instance, Stiva engages in adultery but is continuously forgiven by Dolly, and has no problem in gaining acceptance in society. However, Anna was shunned from society, branded as a “fallen woman”. She even had to meet her son secretly. The punishment society bestowed on Anna was higher than that imposed on men committing the same act were.

The case against Anna was a social retribution against her conducts, construed in such a way that she, ultimately, had to commit suicide. The society treats her in such a manner that suicide becomes inevitability for Anna. The use of conventional morality as a social norm and tradition drove the heroines of the nineteenth century to death. This definitely demonstrates the inequalities present in the western society against men and women. The moral message present in the story was the social tradition of the time. Anna’s death even before the last chapter, and Levin’s flourishing family life was due to the formers wrong choices and the latters right choices.

Social tradition and public opinion has a strong influence on the conducts of most of the characters of the novel. For instance, Karenin expresses to Anna that public opinion was important to him. In the end, it becomes an important part in creating Anna’s fate. Social traditions in the nineteenth century were strong and were right to deride a wife’s bad conducts and to leave the infidel unpunished was unthinkable in public moral discourse.

Karenin believed that the presence of their son had created a natural bond between Anna and himself; however, with the birth of a another child by Anna from her lover created fresh wrath in him for he could not accept the fact that her love for her son would be divided because of this newborn. This newfound anger makes him want to divorce Anna. Karenin’s voice is the tradition of the society that speaks throughout the novel.

The presence of a successful family as is found in that of Stiva and Dolly or Levin and Kitty forms a backdrop to Anna’s adultery. The question of happiness in family life is embedded through the social traditions, which in turn are related to the basic understanding of the customs of the society. The social customs and traditions based on Christian beliefs of morality and fidelity brands Anna as the culprit for the unhappiness of Karenin-Anna’s family. Social traditions dominate the perspective some of the other characters have towards Anna and towards her familial life.

Self Will and Freedom

Tolstoy considered the imposition of self-will for personal happiness as a hindrance to familial happiness. The couples that have been found to opt actions that would present personal happiness but would not. Necessarily, make others close to him/her happy has led to ill consequences and heartache in the family. For instance, in Dolly-Stiva relationship, happiness of the family is compromised due to Stiva’s infidelity.

On the other hand, the relationship of Kitty and Levin flourished due to mutual respect and faithfulness. A consistent communication that is found in the relationship of Kitty and Levin creates unambiguous relationship.

Anna, stuck in a mundane marriage, yearns for unbridled passion, which she finds in Vronskii. She is so bored in her lackluster family life that she goes beyond the social traditions, and the fear of being a social pariah, engages in an affair with another man. Anna’s expression of passion is a show of self-will that defines her character. However, this expression brings her fatal misfortune. On the other hand, controlled passion and unhindered communication results in happy marriages. The expression of self-will in the novel is done to break free from the ordinary existence – as observed in case of Stiva and Anna. However, this one expression led to other problems such as insecurity and jealousy. On the other hand, Levin and Kitty show the make of a more stable couple who embrace passion in their lives but do not allow it to rule them. Unlike them, Anna and Vronskii allow themselves to be completely swayed in the passion of lust, which eventually leads to their isolation.


Tolstoy’s novel Anna Karenina is an exposition marriage and happiness in marriage and family. Tolstoy differentiates between marriage and family in the novel. By developing his characters and couples, Tolstoy has shown the importance of love and fidelity in a relationship, which would dictate the happiness quotient of a marriage. Familial happiness though necessarily dependent on the relationship of the couples, was not a sufficient condition.

For instance, in case of Stiva and Dolly, they were an unhappy couple, but their familial life seemed harmonious. Here one must understand the social traditions of the time dictated the gender roles in a family, and adherence to it enabled a good and happy family. Marriages, on the other hand, were based completely on mutual trust and faithfulness of couples. Expression of self-will is also discussed in the novel through discussion of the characters. Anna is main character who expresses tremendous self-will by denouncing her marriage in favor of an illicit love affair that destroys her social standing. By choosing to be an adulteress, she was permanently branded as a fallen woman and found no place in the society.

Works Cited

Karpushina, Olga. “The Idea of the Family in Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina: The Moral Hierarchy of Families.” Studies in Slavic Cultures (2001): 63-92. Print.

Meyer, Priscilla. “Anna Karenina, Rousseau, and the Gospels.” The Russian Review 66(2) (2007): 204-219. Print.

Tolstoy, Leo. Anna Karenina. NA: Creative Commons Attribution, na. E-book. Web.

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Anna Karenina and Madame Bovary Explicatory Essay

July 16, 2021 by Essay Writer

Updated: Jun 24th, 2019

Literary realism refers to a style that faithfully portrays life and interprets the actualities of all the aspects of reality. The literary style emerged as a reaction to the clouded literary conventions, misplaced esthetic glorification, and excessive beautification of the universe presented by romanticism.

As a literary technique, realism stands out from the other styles due to its four major defining characteristics. One of these characteristics is that realism is more concerned with characters than the plot.

The second defining feature of realism is that its portrayal of reality is in comprehensive and vivid details.

Thirdly, the language used by realists is not overly heightened or poetic.

Finally, literary realism stands out as a result of its emphasis on the moral conflicts in the middle class. Leo Tolstoy’s novel Anna Karenina and Gustave Flaubert’s Madame Bovary are outstanding texts that uniquely exhibit the defining aspects of realism.

Flaubert’s novel Madame Bovary is widely acclaimed for its realistic portrayal of normal life scenarios. It presents an unadorned description of people in their daily life activities. The reality as experienced through the author’s eyes is completely unaffected by any subjectivities of the author.

As such, the text features carefully selected and planned events and incidents. As a result of this, the novel avoids the redundancy and boredom that many associate with literary realism.

For example, the author’s calculated selection of real life events in Madame Bovary is depicted in the context where Emma Bovary is fantasizing about a midnight wedding under the light of torches, an idea that her father dismisses as nonsensical (56).

This part contrasts sentimental romanticism with the unsympathetic realities of life. The reality emerges triumphant following the downfall of Emma, who represents romanticism and her father who represents the real world.

As a result of lacking the realistic appreciation of life, Emma Bovary lacks the true picture of what life should be.

In a similar manner, Leo Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina is considered by many critics as a vivid reconstruction of the Russian experience. Literary, the text betrays its association with the realistic school of thought.

This is due to its emphasis on sincerity, simplicity, the deliberate avoidance of style to elaborate on minute life details, and the use of a normal tone that lacks the artificiality of poetic language. By contrasting the main characters in the story (Anna and Levin), the author, manages to reveal the weaknesses of both.

As such, Levin is presented as an all-round character and not a simplified hero, and Anna is portrayed not as a simplified villain but as a normal human. Her humanness is revealed by depicting the various aspects of her life such as her social life (Tolstoy 245).

The writers depict the dullness of people’s lives without making the texts boring to the readers. The astuteness of the writers makes the explication of ordinary situations rather intriguing without any exaggerations. The readers get a three-dimensional effect of the characters as a result of the detailed descriptions.

In this regard, the characters are perceived as tangible by the audience. Even the metaphors that the authors use are directly picked from the real life. For instance, in describing some houses, Flaubert states that they are “like fur caps pulled down over the eyes” (86).

The titles of literary texts play a very significant role in selling the contents. Through the titles of the two texts, the authors manage to hints about the contents of the texts to the readers. As such, the audience is prepared in advance for what they should expect in the respective texts.

The fact that literary realism gives more emphasis to characters than the plot is depicted in the selection of the respective titles.

The title Anna Karenina is derived from the name of the central character in the novel. The author makes it known to the audience that the character is essential to the story, and that arouses a sense of curiosity in the readers.

The readers want to explore why the author has chosen the particular character’s name as the title of his article. This prompts a critical reading of the text. On a similar note, Gustave Flaubert uses the name of the main character in the novel as the title of his text.

The other effect realized by the choice of character names in literary texts such as Anna Karenina and Madame Bovary is that the audience is prepared to expect a real life story involving the real life experiences of the characters.

This is entirely different from when the title of the story is a description of a place or a symbolic name. Both texts manage to suggest realism even before readers engage the text.

The texts focus on the moral dilemmas that are rampant in the middle classes. This is achieved through the characters whose names constitute the titles of the texts.

Both Flaubert’s and Tolstoy’s texts are considered as successful depictions of reality in their different contexts.

Through the careful selection of real life events, the use of a natural language, the emphasis on the characters rather than the plot, and the vivid description of scenarios and characters, the novels explicate the magical sensation that realistic texts are capable of presenting to their readers.

The titles of the texts are also derived from character names adding to the realism effect of the novels.

Works Cited

Flaubert, Gustave. Madame Bovary. Trans. Francis Steegmuller. New York: Random House, 1957. Print.

Tolstoy, Leo. Anna Karenina: A Novel in Eight Parts. Trans. Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky. New York, NY: Penguin, 2002. Print.

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The comparison of the three works of Woolf, Lawrence and Hardy Research Paper

July 16, 2021 by Essay Writer

Updated: Apr 29th, 2019

Analysis of the key features of each, finding the elements of the authors’ signature styles and deducing the influence of modernism in the given works

The shift of the emphasis from the depiction of events taking place in the outer world to the inner world of the main protagonist is one of the most significant features characteristic of modernist novels. By applying the stream-of-consciousness technique and the method of literary impressionism, novelists intentionally revealed the deficiency of singular focalization limited to the experience and perception of single protagonists.

This paper will discuss the stream-of-consciousness technique used by Woolf in The Mark on the Wall, the embedded vision used by Lawrence in The Horse Dealer’s Daughter and the vision illusion used by Hardy in On the Western Circuit as the elements of the authors’ signatures and identify the common modernist features found in these three stories.

Stream-of-consciousness as the specific feature of The Mark on the Wall by Woolf

Though the first attempts to use a stream-of-consciousness technique were made by realists, this literary form as a mix of memories, expectations, emotions and unexpected associations simultaneously arising in the person’s mind is attributed to modernism (Kern 87). This uniquely interesting technique was used by Virginia Woolf in The Mark on the Wall which was recognized as a manifest of modernism (Leech 136).

Regardless of the seeming spontaneity and inconsequentiality of the writing style used by Woolf in The Mark on the Wall, readers can follow the train of thoughts of the main protagonist. Though everyone experiences a free flow of thoughts and impressions, the ability to put it into writing depends upon the writers’ knowledge of how other minds think and other bodies feel (Leech 143).

Therefore, the syntactic structures, parenthetic sentences, repetitions and contrasts used by the author demonstrate Woolf’s profound understanding of the process of thinking and ability to put complicated thinking processes into simple words.

The repetition of the phrase ‘the mark on the wall’ shows how obtrusive this idea appears to be for the protagonist. The definite articles used for both nouns from the very beginning show that the idea has occurred to the character previously and the background of the story is concealed from readers.

Woolf’s literary experiment of the stream-of-consciousness writing blurs the dividing lines between different genres, including a story, an essay and a diary entry. By blending the opposites of reality and fantasy, inner and outer experiences, the author creates a unique framework.

To reveal the process of spontaneous thinking and inner monologue of the main protagonist, Woolf uses exclamations, interjections and response forms. The stand-alone constructions and the use of the response forms produce an impression that the inner monologue is fragmented and misses certain linking elements. For instance, the protagonist admits: “Yes, it must have been winter time” (Woolf 2424).

In this sentence the protagonist gives a response to the question that was never voiced. However, readers can make certain guesses and fill in the gaps in the narration. Additionally, Woolf inserts a number of parenthetical sentences into the longer ones, destructing the linearity of the text. It makes the text to resemble the process of associative thinking which cannot be reproduced in simple linear sentences.

The interjections and exclamations used by the author make the inner monologue more emotional. “Oh! dear me, the mystery of life; the inaccuracy of thought! The ignorance of humanity!” (Woolf 2424). The progressive structures are used to reproduce the add-on principle dominating in everyday speech. “Yes, it must have been the winter time, and we had just finished out tea, for I remember that I was smoking a cigarette when I looked up and saw the mark on the wall for the first time” (Woolf 2424).

According to the grammar rules, this sentence is too long. However, the author does not divide it into shorter ones, attempting to show the spontaneity and speed with which these thoughts run through the protagonist’s mind.

The stream of consciousness used by Woolf in The Mark on the Wall portrays the process of thinking as an active and adventurous process, taking place in real time with its dynamics and undergoing the influence of external factors (Leech 143).

The embedded vision as the peculiarity of The Horse Dealer’s Daughter by Lawrence

The technique of narrowing and expanding vision which was characteristic of modernism was used by Lawrence in The Horse Dealer’s Daughter for structuring this short story (Kern 183). Additionally, the theme of vision and physical sight interrelated with the motifs of understanding and feeling is closely connected to the concept of self-identity of the main characters.

Touching upon an important philosophical question of body-mind dualism, Lawrence treats the eye as an instrument of physical sight in the first part, narrowing the vision of the narration and refers to it as a sentient organ in the second part of the narration, expanding the vision. The author’s attempt to show the relativity of physical vision which can be rather delusive is compatible with the modernism principle of embedded vision.

At the beginning when the vision is narrow, the first example of treating physical sight as a fruitless attempt to understand the outer world takes place when the doctor meets Mabel for the first time. “At this point Mabel rose from the table, and they all seemed to become aware of her existence… The young doctor looked at her, but did not address her” (Lawrence 2593).

Therefore, the doctor did not notice her previously even though she has been sitting in front of him. It shows how limited the physical vision can be because of the individual’s perspective. The second glance passes between Fergusson and the girl when he notices her at her mother’s grave at the cemetery.

Though this circumstance is concealed from readers and the doctor at this point, the girl intends this glance to be her last act before she drowns herself. Regardless of the intensity of this glance and the overall situation, the doctor’s vision appears to be only a fruitless attempt to understand it.

Taking into account the fact that readers are no aware of the girl’s intentions either, it can be stated that the vision of the narration is initially narrowed to the doctor’s perspective. The situation and the vision changes after Fergusson sees the girl go into the pond to drown herself. At this moment, the physical sight enabled the character to understand and interpret the meaning of the situation and the girl’s secret was revealed.

After the doctor throws himself into the pond to rescue Mabel, in the water of the pond the two of them lose their sight for a short period of time and vision changes after they go out from the water. “The pond remains an important point of mediation between the earlier focus on sight and the subsequent focus on the eye itself” (Bell 104).

Analyzing the situation in the pond and the following scenes, it can be stated that the doctor saves the girl and the girl saves the doctor because she appears to be the one in need. Mabel saves Fergusson from his loneliness and isolation. After the episode, the secrets are revealed and the characters look into the eyes of each other, perceiving the eyes as the windows of the soul.

The physical sight is closely related to vision and self-identity of characters. After losing sight for a few moments in the pond and expanding vision after going out of the pond, the doctor and the horse dealer’s daughter modify their personal identities.

Lawrence found the proper balance between the divine and trivial in depicting everyday reality of the male-dominated world in which his characters live and in which the girl is treated as the daughter of a horse dealer. The alteration of the vision, an open ending and involvement of readers into the process of interpreting the text of The Horse Dealer’s Daughter by Lawrence can be regarded as indicators of Lawrence’s individual signature in the modernism movement.

The vision illusion in On the Western Circuit as an element of Hardy’s style

The vision illusion created by a roundabout has become a starting point of the love affair between the main characters of On the Western Circuit by Hardy. The aspect of the vision distorted because of the limitation of the personal perspective of characters as a feature characteristic of modernism has become an element of Hardy’s signature in this short story.

The delusion starts after Charles sees Anna on the roundabout for the first time and is intensified during their epistolary romance when Edith writes letters to Charles under the name of Anna who is illiterate. The juxtaposition between the urban phenomenon of the steam engine, roundabout and the rural life of the housemaid Anna can be attributed to Hardy’s complicated criticism of modernity and Britain’s policies concerning the imperial ventures overseas (Morgan 563).

The steam circuses not only hide certain aspects of reality from the viewers, but also create an illusion that becomes preferable to reality. Therefore, when Anna is spinning by on the roundabout and Charles is looking at her, under the influence of the visual mistake and the consequent queer emotion, the two of them delude themselves.

Charles believes that Anna is a girl he loves madly, while Anna becomes certain that she has chosen Charles herself. Therefore, the delusive image of a pretty girl spinning by on the roundabout becomes a starting point of the visual illusion and self-fraud of the main characters which would have been impossible in the ante-industrial era.

The second aspect contributing to the self-delusion of the main characters is the influence of writing upon them. Edith, who has written letters to Charles signing them with Anna’s name and read Charles’ responses to illiterate Ann, undergoes the influence of this correspondence and believes that she is Charles’ real correspondent and she has fallen in love with him in the course of their epistolary romance.

Additionally, Edith believes that their correspondence has the same effect upon Charles. After witnessing the marriage ceremony between Ann and Charles, Edith is disappointed. “’I have ruined him!’ She kept repeating. ‘I have ruined him; because I would not deal treacherously toward her!’” (Hardy 1934). After Edith tells Charles about the fraud with correspondence, he keeps repeating that she has ruined him.

However, Hardy shows that physical attraction is still stronger in creating bonds between a man and a woman than writing because Charles chooses Ann. Moreover, the main reason for the self-deception of the main characters is even deeper than visual illusion created by roundabout or the effects produced by writing.

One of the fundamental causes of their self-deception is their self-betrayal and the loss of identity. The characters deny not only their true features, but also their very names, betraying themselves and ready to betray others.

Therefore, the different levels of illusion and betrayal affecting vision of the main characters are peculiar elements of Hardy’s style in On the Western Circuit.

The comparison of the visions and the modernist features of the three stories

Notwithstanding the striking difference between the three stories under analysis and the peculiarities of the writer’s individual signatures, all of them have common features characteristic of the modernist aesthetics that influenced all of them.

The first and one of the most significant aspects is the language used by Woolf, Lawrence and Hardy. Event though the stream-of-consciousness technique in its pure form was used only by Woolf, Lawrence and Hardy chose other ways for revealing the conscious and sometimes even unconscious processes in their characters.

Despite the fact that Lawrence conceals Mabel’s inner monologues which took place in her consciousness before she goes to the pond to drown herself, this character shows the tension of her thoughts through her gaze which is defined as dangerous and frightening by the author. Edith as the character of Hardy’s story deludes herself that she falls in love with Charles.

Though Edith’s thoughts preceding her decision to say the truth to Charles are mostly concealed from readers, they can make guesses judging by the following development of the events. Additionally, the omission of certain episodes and active involvement of readers into the process of interpretation of the text which is characteristic of modernist discourse is evident in these stories (Childs 211).

The elliptical sentences and unpredictable associations used by Woolf in the inner monologue of the main protagonist require readers’ efforts for filling in the gaps in the chain of thoughts. Lawrence conceals Mabel’s intentions before she goes into the water of the pond so that the readers could reproduce her thinking process in their imagination.

Hardy conceals the thoughts and feelings of Edith until the concrete moment. Therefore, apart from the open endings of the three stories which offer variety of possible interpretations, Woolf, Lawrence and Hardy leave gaps in their texts for the purpose of involving readers into the active process of interpreting them.

Developing the theme of consciousness and thinking process, it should be noted that the authors emphasize the limitation of individual perspective by shifting the vision of their stories. Thus, the main protagonist of Woolf’s story cannot identify the origin of the mark on the wall until the unknown interlocutor intervenes into the inner monologue.

The doctor as the main protagonist of Lawrence’s story The Horse Dealer’s Daughter cannot understand Mabel’s gazes until he sees her going into the pond. The self-deception as the result of the vision illusion of the main characters becomes an important point of the plot of On the Western Circuit.

Therefore, by shifting the vision, narrowing and then expanding it, the authors show readers how limited their own views can be. Importantly, the theme of the false romantic correspondence as one of the generators of self-fraud in Hardy’s story reveals the potential impact of writing upon readers in its exaggerated form.

Though readers’ active involvement is required for decoding the messages conveyed in the three stories, the techniques chosen by the authors doubtlessly had an important impact upon the readers’ perceptions and responses.

Notwithstanding the significant differences in the main plot lines of the stories under consideration and the peculiarities of the individual signatures of their authors, the emphasis on the conscious and subconscious process of the main protagonists, active involvement of readers into the process of interpreting the stories and shifts of the vision are characteristic of the three stories and compatible with modernism aesthetics.


Comparing and contrasting the techniques used by Woolf in The Mark on the Wall, Lawrence in The Horse Dealer’s Daughter and Hardy in On the Western Circuit, it can be stated that working in the frames of modernism aesthetics, these authors managed to preserve their unique signatures, combining them with the features characteristic of the movement.

Regardless of the differences in the techniques and themes developed by Woolf, Lawrence and Hardy, these novelists put emphasis upon the readers’ active involvement into the process of interpreting their texts and focused on the inner mental lives of their characters, showing that their perceptions can significantly differ from reality.

Works Cited

Bell, Michael. Literature, Modernism and Myth: Belief and Responsibility in the Twentieth Century. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1997. Print.

Childs, Peter. Modernism. 2nded. New York, NY: Routledge, 2008. Print.

Hardy, Thomas. “On the Western Circuit.” The Norton Anthology of English Literature.Ed. Stephen Greenblatt and Meyer Howard Abrams. 8thed. New York: W.W. Norton, 2006. Print.

Kern, Stephen. The Modernist Novel: A Critical Introduction. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2011. Print.

Lawrence, David Herbert Richards. “The Horse Dealer’s Daughter.” The Norton Anthology of English Literature. Ed. Stephen Greenblatt and Meyer Howard Abrams. 8thed. New York: W.W. Norton, 2006. Print.

Leech, Geoffrey. Language in Literature: Style and Foregrounding. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education, 2008. Print.

Morgan, Rosemarie. The Ashgate Research Companion to Thomas Hardy. Farnham, UK: Ashgate Publishing, 2010. Print.

Woolf, Virginia. “The Mark on the Wall.” The Norton Anthology of English Literature.Ed. Stephen Greenblatt and Meyer Howard Abrams. 8thed. New York: W.W. Norton, 2006. Print.

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Reflecting the Concept of Social Rank in Courtly Texts: Methods and Strategies. Essay

July 16, 2021 by Essay Writer

Updated: Jan 14th, 2020


Defining the specifics of social relationships and analyzing the principles in accordance with which these relationships develop is, perhaps, one of the most complicated tasks for a writer of courtly texts.

Because of a large variety of factors, starting with the complexity of the leadership model adopted by the head of the state, up to the structure of the society in question and the traditions of the time, the means of defining social ranks turns into a major problem.

However, with the help of an array of literary tools, the authors of some of the most famous courtly texts, Benvenuto Cellini with his Vita and Baldesar Castiglione in his The Book of the Courtier manage to nail down the specifics of social relationships in a very accurate manner.

One of the most famous representatives of courtly texts writers, Castiglione used assorted methods of introducing his idea of social ranks in court.

Although his concept of social ranks was also largely based on the idea of masculinity, Castiglione used different tools in order to convince the reader in the necessity to follow the principles of gender profiling. The examples of gender based social ranking within the court system can be found throughout the text: “I bear to women as these ladies think, but for my own good”1.

However, some researchers argue that Castiglione was, in fact, the first to suggest that the courtly relationships between men and women should be based on the principles of chivalry, along with the ideas of “kindness and noble courtesy”2.

Therefore, apart from masculinity, nobility principles should be mentioned as the elements required for the court social rankings to base on, Castiglione explained3. Castiglione’s text is a perfect example of humanist principles working their way into the society of the XV century.

Another peculiar concept that Castiglione seems to cling to concerns the phenomenon that Bernard4 defined as rhetoric of exemplification. Not only does it allow envisioning the court system in motion, but also link the actual reader and the internal reader.

In contrast to Castiglione, Cellini uses more obvious methods to define social ranks. In fact, Cellini disregards the idea of incorporating more subtle literary devices and shifts the emphasis from a slight mimicry of social relationships in his work, as Castiglione suggests, to downright instructing on the principles that social relationships must be based on.

When it comes to defining the specifics of Cellini’s writing style, one must give him credit for using the imagery created throughout his work to his advantage. Not only does he mold characters efficiently, but also knows how to use them to make an impression on the reader.

One of the most obvious “instructions” concerns the way in which Cellini envisions male – female relationships. Cellini obviously insists on male superiority, nearly comparing women to objects at some point of his work: “As a background to the women, there was spread an espalier of natural jasmines in full beauty”5.

The given objectification of women often occurs on Cellini’s reminiscences, and is in most cases made by the narrator: “Now I must make you understand that the woman is mine”6.

Another tool used by Cellini in his attempt to describe the system of social ranking within the court system, the transition from an artisan to an artist also deserves a proper mentioning7. In fact, Cellini reinvented the entire concept of being a courtier, stressing the significance of art as the means to separate the position of a courtier and any other position that a civilian may possibly take.

Finally, such tool as self-representation deserves a thorough scrutiny. Indeed, when considering the approach that Benvenuto Cellini uses to describe the principles of social relationships and the concept of social rank, one will inevitably realize that the author does not analyze the environment that already exists but, instead, molds it in accordance with his vision of society.

As a result, Cellini resorts to the methods that can be defined as mimesis. When taking a closer look at his work, one will eventually note that Cellini creates a model of social behavior for people to comply with and, therefore, defines the existing social ranks instead of providing his commentary on the already existing ones.

Though hardly being a literary device, self-representation still makes the structure of social rank seem more palatable, since it allows defining the leader and, therefore, tracing the course of the directions that shape the society and grant its members with particular social ranks.

According to Gardner, the given model adds an artistic touch to the strategy chosen by Cellini; she states explicitly that Cellini’s Viva broke new grounds as “an example of an individual’s attempt to mold his own reputation and historical legacy through a cohesive literary representation of his personality and his art”8.

One should give Cellini credit for his idea of using masculinity as the key tool for defining the principles of social ranking. The given tool works rather well in the context of the text, yet hardly seems efficient on its own.

Another tool that serves its purpose of defining the specifics of the social stratification of the era and at the same time convinces the audience is a careful stylization of the text.

It is remarkable that the choice of vocabulary made by the author has stood the test of time successfully: “the autobiography makes things easy by addressing the reader in a comfortable, if stylized, English […]. A measure of the status of these translations has been the fact that no one ties to replace them with fresh, modern ones”9.

Thus, the use of masculinity principles defines the roles that men and women are supposed to take within the court by stressing the necessity for the former to participate within the system, and for the latter to remain a part of the background.

It is quite peculiar that the process of objectification of women is practically described in Cellini’s book as he mentions the process of sculpting a lily, which serves as the metonymy for Gismondo’s wife (whose name is actually never mentioned in the book): “I promised the jewel should be twice as good as the model.”10

Correspondingly, Cellini assumes that women are not supposed to take active part in court meetings, as well as they must not offer and, worse yet, defend their point of view in court; on the contrary, women are viewed as damsels, the pretty faces that are not expected to have any significance of the court processes and course of events.

Consequently, the manifestation of the artistic autonomy seems like the next obvious stem in Cellini’s design of social structure within the court. Apart from making it clear that a member of the court has to undergo a transformation from an artisan into an artist, Cellini states that the latter is supposed to enjoy artistic autonomy for his actions to have a tangible effect on the artist’s subjects.

It is worth stressing that Cellini uses a hyperbole to prove his point by claiming that artistic leaders “made a crown of artistic glory for their city above anything the world had seen”11, which shows that his means of reflecting the social rank were rather harsh and straightforward.

The differences in the methods chosen by the authors in question are defined largely by the goals that these authors pursued in writing their books.

While Castiglione was clearly trying to shed some light on the events of the epoch and provide a fairly decent account of the latter, Cellini was obviously trying to strengthen his power over the nation even more. As a result, the representation of the social rank in two texts did not quite match, Cellini’s one being more focused on the subordination issue

When it comes to defining the differences in the way that Cellini and Castiglione described the social ranks of their time period, it should be mentioned that Castiglione used a wide range of tools that served their own unique purpose and were to reflect the true state of the society.

It is obvious that Cellini’s take on the representation of the social ranking in his courtly autobiography is more than obvious – it is a straightforward, in your face manifestation of Cellini’s viewpoint, which is far from being democratic.

The author clearly puts his stake on the expressivity of his arguments and the convincingness of his speech, which can be easily traced in the numerous reiterations of certain elements of his argument.

The aforementioned masculinity, therefore, ousts the very idea of democratic relationships, as well as democratic attitudes towards women; quite on the opposite, masculinity serves as the means to subdue women to the dominance of men and to subdue any attempts of resistance against it.

In many ways, Cellini’s self-representation defines the manner in which social ranks were depicted in courtly texts of the time.

Castiglione, on the opposite, prefers to express his idea of the court members’ social roles and the position of men and women in court in a more discrete manner12. In addition, Castiglione does not seem to rely on his authority among readers when defining the key principles of social ranking in court.

Instead, the author decides to integrate the principle of masculinity, which still remains the key to arranging court’s social ranks, together with the idea of introducing gentlemanly manners, as Hinz defined Castiglione’s strategy13.

The given method works rather well with the target audience, even though it lacks the persistence that Cellini’s work has. Cavallo, in her turn, makes it obvious that Castiglione uses portrait as the key tool in his representation of social ranks in court.

In contrast to Cellini, Castiglione adopts – or, at the very least, pretends to adopt – an objective viewpoint by having several narrators in his story and, therefore, drawing a portrait of a courtier by using what is supposed to be several opinions.

The efficacy of the given method is amplified by the fact that the narrators do not seem to agree on their visions of a courtier: “the critics have uncovered tensions on various forms which threaten to disrupt the game and to expose deep rifts under the elegant courtly veneer”14.

Defined as the engagement of both the actual reader and the internal reader into the argument, the given method works quite well and is much more subtle than the one that was chosen by Cellini. According to Bernard, “Hence from the vantage point of the author the limited, indeed parochial, perspective of his text’s interlocutors stands in contrast to his own hard-won prudential knowledge” (Bernard 34).

However, the aforementioned does not mean that Castiglione disregards the idea of using masculinity in his writing. There are evident traces of the chauvinist concepts in his work as well, which signify that the court was still organized in accordance with the idea of male dominance.

Nevertheless, Castiglione uses other tools apart from masculinity principle in his work, which can be explained by his lack of certainty regarding the efficacy of masculinity in his persuasion.

It should be noted, though, that the given authors were not the only ones who resorted to the integration of masculinity ideas into the principles that the court was guided by; as recent researches show, a number of theorists considered masculinity and the dominance of men in the court as the only legitimate principle that the latter could be organized by.

Apart from the concept of masculinity and the gender issue in general, the authors make efficient use of a range of literary devices, including hyperbole and reiterations of the argument throughout the work. However, compared to the aforementioned distinctive feature of both works, the given devices can be seen as minor ones.


It would be wrong to assume that the methods of reasoning used by the two authors are impeccable; more to the point, they are rarely objective. However, what one cannot deny these authors with their methods is the efficacy of the latter.

Although the emphasis on masculinity as the necessary feature of court social relationships is being stressed by both authors, Cellini seems to be more persistent with his chauvinist concepts, while Castiglione clearly attempts at introducing the elements of chivalry into the courtly relationships between men and women.

In addition, Cellini, being obsessed with the idea of power, sees the social ranking system as the means to reinforce his influence among the representatives of the court, thus, stating blatantly that he needs to use the existing court system to his advantage.

While the given principle works bizarrely well on the target audience of Cellini, Castiglione understandably avoids black-and-white judgments, preferring to introduce the principles of courtesy into his system of social rankings.

Each work clearly serving its purpose, it can be assumed that the tools used by both writers to represent the concept of social ranking within the court system are fully justified, though not quite appropriate in the XXI century. A product of their time, the given tools perform their social function well enough for their authors to be credited as innovators.


Bernard, John, ‘Formiamo un Cortegian’: Castiglione and the Aims of Writing,’ MLN 115 (2000), pp. 34–63.

Castiglione, Baldesar, Ct. ‘Book of the Courtier,’ in Project Gutenberg. Web.

Cavallo, Joan, ‘Joking Matters: Politics and Dissimilation in Castiglione’s Book of the Courier,’ Renaissance Quarterly 53 (2000), pp. 402–424.

Cellini, Benvenuto, ‘Autobiography,’ trans. By John Addington Symmons, in Project Gutenberg. Web.

Creighton, Gilbert, ‘Cellini’s Other Medium: His Writings and Their Reception,’ Studies in the Decorative Art 14 (2006–2007), pp. 19–25.

Gardner, Victoria, ‘Homines non Nascuntur, Sed Figuntur: Benvenuto Cellini’s Vita and Self-Presentation of the Renaissance Artist,’ The Sixteenth century Journal 28 (1997), pp. 447–465.

Hinz, Manfred, ‘Castiglione, Gracián, and the Foundation of Gentlemanly Manners in Early Modern Europe,’ in Dietmar Schloss, ed. Civilizing America: Manners and Civility in American Literature and Culture (Heidelberg, Germany: Universitätsverlag Winter, 2009), pp. 2-18

Richards, Jennifer, ‘Assumed Simplicity and the Critique of Nobility: Or, How Castiglione Read Cicero,’ Renaissance Quarterly 54 (2001), pp. 460-486.

Saccone, Eduardo, ‘The Portrait of the Courtier in Castiglione,’ Italica 64 (1987), pp. 1–18.


1 Castiglione, Baldesar, Ct. ‘Book of the Courtier,’ in Project Gutenberg.

2 Castiglione, Baldesar, Ct. ‘Book of the Courtier,’ in Project Gutenberg.

3 Richards, Jennifer, ‘Assumed Simplicity and the Critique of Nobility: Or, How Castiglione Read Cicero,’ Renaissance Quarterly 54 (2001), pp. 460-486 (p. 462).

4 John Bernard, ‘Formiamo un Cortegian’: Castiglione and the Aims of Writing,’ MLN 115 (2000), pp. 34–63 (p. 35).

5 Cellini, Benvenuto, ‘Autobiography,’ trans. By John Addington Symmons, in Project Gutenberg.

6 Cellini, Benvenuto, ‘Autobiography,’ trans. By John Addington Symmons, in Project Gutenberg.

7 Gardner, Victoria, ‘Homines non Nascuntur, Sed Figuntur: Benvenuto Cellini’s Vita and Self-Presentation of the Renaissance Artist,’ The Sixteenth century Journal, 28 (1997), pp. 447–465.

8 Gardner, Victoria, ‘Homines non Nascuntur, Sed Figuntur: Benvenuto Cellini’s Vita and Self-Presentation of the Renaissance Artist,’ The Sixteenth century Journal, 28 (1997), pp. 447–465 (p. 447).

9 Creighton, Gilbert, ‘Cellini’s Other Medium: His Writings and Their Reception,’ Studies in the Decorative Art 14 (2006–2007), pp. 19–25 (p. 19).

10 Cellini, Benvenuto, ‘Autobiography,’ trans. By John Addington Symmons, in Project Gutenberg.

11 Cellini, Benvenuto, ‘Autobiography,’ trans. By John Addington Symmons, in Project Gutenberg.

12 Saccone, Eduardo, ‘The Portrait of the Courtier in Castiglione,’ Italica, 64 (1987), pp. 1–18 (p. 1).

13 Hinz, Manfred, ‘Castiglione, Gracián, and the Foundation of Gentlemanly Manners in Early Modern Europe,’ in Dietmar Schloss, ed. Civilizing America: Manners and Civility in American Literature and Culture (Heidelberg, Germany: Universitätsverlag Winter, 2009), pp. 2-18 (p.2).

14 Cavallo, Joan, ‘Joking Matters: Politics and Dissimilation in Castiglione’s Book of the Courier,’ Renaissance Quarterly 53 (2000), pp. 402–424 (p. 402).

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Family Supper and Naema Essay

July 16, 2021 by Essay Writer

Updated: Dec 11th, 2019


The best stories are those that draw the reader into the plot, they create a certain level of anticipation, foreboding and incite in the reader the feeling of actually being within the story itself and experiencing the same feelings, the same terror or even the same happiness as the characters within.

In the case of the stories “A Family Supper” by Kazuo Ishiguro and “Naema – Whereabouts Unknown” by Mohammed Dib, the narrator acts as the focal point that draws readers into the story and acts as a means of delving into current events and the back story of the plot points utilized.

Told through narration, “A Family Supper” and “Naema” contribute significantly to a reader’s sense of “living the plot” thereby creating an interesting and entertaining story.

Naema – Shock and Grief

The narrator of Naema contributes to the sense of the reader living the plot through his depiction of the stages of shock, grief and despair. In Naema, readers are presented with the story of an unnamed narrator who is searching for his wife.

The setting of the plot is during the Franco-Algerian war which was rife with instances of inhuman brutality with thousands killed on a massive scale both during the fighting and in the numerous concentration camps (Maerhofer, 204-221).

The narrator in effect describes the feeling of utter helplessness at not being able to find his wife, his consternation at not knowing whether she is alive or dead and his anger at the situation in general. The means of narration within the story is one where the author attempts to convey to the reader the feelings of grief and despair felt by the unnamed narrator through a depiction of the events and the character’s feelings.

In effect, Mohammed Dib attempts to make the character relatable by having him unnamed and making the reader feel as if he/she is in the same situation as the narrator (Maerhofer, 204-221). Evidence of this can be seen in the phrase “Not to know where she is, what they have done to her is a torment” as well as the phrase “wait, that’s all that’s left to us“.

These general statements are relatable to a certain extent given that many people have felt similar despair when presented with the concept of “not knowing” as well as “having to wait”. Such concepts are rife throughout people’s lives and, as such, are easily relatable.

Family Supper – Understanding the Past

The method of narration in the story “The Family Supper” draws readers in to understand the reason why the narrator left without actually stating it outright. While it may not seem evident the following phrase helps to encapsulate the essence of the narration within the story: “We fell silent again. The sound of locusts came in from the garden. I looked out into the darkness. The well was no longer visible“.

The focus given by the narrator on the well was actually based on what the well represented, in a sense it was a source of childhood fears, a part of the unknown, yet when reading the story it becomes evident that the ghost of old woman that the narrator associated with the well was not actually a ghost but his own mother (Lewis, 1- 3).

This is evidenced by the following phrase from the story “‘Your mother.’ His voice had become very hard. ‘Can’t you recognize your own mother?“. This refers to the old woman that the narrator saw in a photo that he thought was the ghost from his memories of the well but was actually his mother.

Throughout the story readers are presented with hints about why the narrator left, such as being due to the woman Vicki or even due to the sternness of his own mother. It was seen that the narrator apparently associated an image of fear (i.e. the ghost) with that of his mother which implies that he viewed his mother with fear, or even contempt, and this was the reason why he left in the first place (Ingersoll, 1- 2).

Considering the fact that the narrator even goes so far to state that he had never learned the cause of his mother’s death until recently implies that he did not even go to Japan for her funeral thereby solidifying the claim that they were not on good terms.

Naema – Imagination

Through an explanation of the context of events within the story Naema, the narrator is able to instill in readers a sense of foreboding which causes them to imagine the possible horrors that occurred to the unnamed author’s wife. At the very start of the story the following phrase can be seen “The Bedeau barracks, the prisoners held there are considered to be hostages; dreadful things are said about what happens to them“.

At the very start of the story, this particular reference to a horrific concentration camp/barracks draws readers in by inclining them to imagine what horrors could possibly await the wife of the narrator within such a place.

While not expressly stated nor elaborated on, this particular facet of the narration helps to draw readers in by making them want to know what happened to the wife of the narrator, whether she lived, died, or was found in the end.

It is the sense of “not knowing” that drives readers to imagine, wanting to know more and, as a result, draws them into the story to understand more about what could have possibly happened and what was the initial cause of the disappearance (Asibong, 349-356).


Based on what has been presented in this paper so far, it can be seen that told through narration, “A Family Supper” and “Naema” contribute significantly to a reader’s sense of “living the plot” thereby creating an interesting and entertaining story.

Works Cited

Asibong, Andrew. “Radically Fantastical: The Politics Of The Truth-Event In The “Metic” Novels Of Mohammed Dib And Marie Ndiaye.” Contemporary French & Francophone Studies 14.4 (2010): 349-356. Literary Reference Center. Web.

Ingersoll, Earl G. “Kazuo Ishiguro.” Cyclopedia Of World Authors, Fourth Revised Edition (2003): 1-2. Literary Reference Center. Web.

Lewis, Leon. “A Family Supper.” Masterplots II: Short Story Series, Revised Edition (2004): 1-3. Literary Reference Center. Web.

Maerhofer, John W. “Algeria “Revisited”: Imperialism, Resistance, And The Dialectic Of Violence In Mohammed Dib’s “The Savage Night..” College Literature 37.1 (2010): 204-221. Teacher Reference Center. Web.

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“Thoughts from Underground” and “Introduction: Roughing it in the Bush” Comparison Essay

July 16, 2021 by Essay Writer

Updated: Apr 15th, 2019

Comparison of the Two Poems and representation of Canada

Margret Atwood’s poetry work revolves around representative literature. She portrays Canada during the 19th century. In her work, ‘Thoughts from Underground’, she portrays the challenges and the perception that different people had of Canada.

The poem revolves around the country’s political and social organization. Moodie’s book, ‘Introduction: Roughing it in the Bush’ speaks of the country in a disparaging way. She does not understand the fuss and hype about migrating to Canada.

This paper seeks to compare and contrast the two literary works in the way they portray and represent Canada. In the introduction, Moodie is a pessimistic and negative person. She does not understand the rationale behind the massive migration to Canada.

The poem ‘Thoughts from Underground’ depicts Canada in a transition. The author, Margret Atwood, portrays Susanna Moodie as the main character who had migrated from England to Canada during the 19th century. At the outset, Moodie is upset with the country that she has migrated to and becomes a part of it. She hates Canada for very many reasons including its winter and summer.

She is in total denial of her new country and misses her home country a great deal (Moodie 36). To this end, the poem portrays Canada as a mean country where everyone seems not to care. Moodie sees that every person is rude while she is not. She feels out of place and struggles to fit in the society. These thoughts of Canada portrays the country in a negative manner where everyone seems little concerned about the happenings of the outside world.

As the country changes, Moodie becomes successful and is not willing to let her initial hatred ruin her success. She becomes proud of Canada owing to the success that she achieves in the country and starts comparing it with England (Atwood 59). Although her heart is in love with Canada, she also holds the same feeling for her native country.

She rationalizes her feelings by accepting the fact that she would not be in a position to go back to England and finds it a good idea to love Canada. This however, does not change the fact that the country is not comparable to Britain where the society is kind and loving.

As she continues with her life in Canada, she becomes a part of the society and feels that she is a part of it. It is at this time that she ponders how she has changed although she had attributed the changes to the dynamic environment of the country.

Atwood depicts the country as dynamic since it begins to appreciate diversity. After so many years of discrimination, the country has become of age and treats every person with the same regard. To this end, the poem highlights how Moodie felt on her arrival to the country and her acceptance of the fact that she would succeed in Canada and that it was impossible to go back to England.

She becomes aware of that fact and begins to appreciate the opportunities that her new country offers (Atwood 61). After evaluating all the negative feelings she has had in the country, she begins to have a new perspective of the good things she has witnessed. The rationale is that she now understands that her negative perception had led her to believing that Canada was not the right place for her.

While the reverse is true, she still holds reservations for the country. The poem’s depiction of Canada as a land that has appreciated change is partly because of the desperation that Moodie shows (35). She has no hope of ever going back to England.

As such, the desperation has led her to accepting that she has no other choice other than loving her new country. Nonetheless, the poem depicts Canada in a positive sense in that every person is equal and can take any opportunity that the country provides.

This work is a memory of Canada in the 19th century. It depicts how the country changed and the efforts that people made to enhance the changes. In a precise way, the poem denotes the country as it was and the progress it made in becoming accommodative to people’s needs and diversity.

In fact, Atwood’s work is a sincere picture of the country and unnamed people who made the progress possible. To this end, people began realizing their dreams and they became proud of Canada thus, they portray it as a land where any person could succeed (Atwood 61). Although Moodie had suffered in the same country, it is noticeable that the country has changed a great deal making her successful and comfortable.

In the book, ‘Introduction: Roughing it in the bush’, the author introduces Mrs. Moodie as a person who is pessimistic about emigration. She describes the conditions that forced people to migrate to other countries and asserts that people left their luxurious homes and enjoyment in search of better opportunities.

This is in addition to escaping sarcasm from the rest of British society for their perceived low social status. What the emigrants did not understand is the disappointment in the foreign land.

Moodie highlights that educated people in British society composed of military men were willing to leave the comfort of their country in the early 19th century. Australia was the most appealing land to migrate to although it did not take long before the potential emigrants realized the disenchantment in the foreign land (6).

Their focus shifts to Canada. In the introduction of the book, Moodie pinpoints the enthusiasm that the emigrants exhibited about Canada. People told tales about fertile land, nearness to their mother country, favorable climate and most of all, a notion prevailed that there was no taxation in Canada (1).

Nonetheless, nobody told the emigrants of the negative aspects of the land. Tens of thousands migrated to Canada. Upon arrival, Moodie says that the naive migrants bought huge tracts of land to assert their dominance as colonists. Throughout the introduction of the book, Moodie seems very pessimistic about migration although some of the emigrants became successful and prospered in the new land.

The introduction of the book is comparable to the poem, ‘Thoughts from Underground’ in the sense that the country suffers innumerable challenges including poverty. Despite these challenges, emigrants seemed unmoved and determined to leave their native country according to Moodie.

While Atwood shies away from emphasizing on material poverty, Moodie disparages the residents and the natives and compares them to the poorest of all people in the British society (6). Although Moodie describes the great opportunities that existed in Canada as tales, she applauds Canada and points out that the emigrants who bought large tracts of land had prospered.

Atwood insists on the importance of change for a country to make progress. Moodie’s introduction does not place emphasis on the potential for success. All she emphasizes is the rust and smut of the environment and other aspects of the society that she finds appalling.

While Atwood depicts Canada as a land that has made numerous strides in development, Moodie remains negative and pessimistic that the country could provide a safe haven for the emigrants. She depicts the emigrants to the country as sheepish since they were oblivious of the promised opportunities. Emigrants had the notion that they could build a log house within hours with the help of generous neighbors.

Nonetheless, Moodie dismisses this notion by saying that the houses were despicable. She says that, “migrants did not venture upon a picture of disgusting scenes of riot and low debauchery exhibited in raising dens of dirt which could be likened to English pig-sties” (7). To her, the country could rarely prosper owing to her perceived backwardness.

Unlike Moodie’s introduction, the poem ‘Thoughts from Underground’ by Atwood shows both sides of Canada and depicts changes and revolutions that the country underwent in the medieval era. Atwood’s portrays Canada as a country where every person is able to make ends meet although it was almost impossible in the past (Atwood 55).

This way, her depiction of Canada is honest like that of any other country where both the good and the bad are major characteristics. It is also important to notice that racial segregation was aparent in the country during that period. However, progressive administration and ability of the country to appreciate change was typical of success that Atwood explains.


In effect, Atwood and Moodie’s works have few comparable aspects in the way they both ortray Canada. Although they both appraise the social and political organization of the country, Moodie is negative and pessimistic of the country. She does not understand the rationale behind migration.

Throughout her introduction, Moodie describes the massive migration to Canada as unreasonable and compares the emigrants to a flock of sheep heading to a slaughterhouse without their knowledge.

Works Cited

Atwood, Margaret. The Journals of Susanna Moodie. Toronto: Oxford University Press, 1970. Print.

Moodie, Susanna. Introduction: Roughing It in the Bush. Toronto: Penguin Publishers, Print.

This essay on “Thoughts from Underground” and “Introduction: Roughing it in the Bush” Comparison was written and submitted by your fellow student. You are free to use it for research and reference purposes in order to write your own paper; however, you must cite it accordingly.

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Narayan’s and Rushdie’s Perspectives Regarding Hybrid Identity Essay

July 16, 2021 by Essay Writer

Updated: Apr 15th, 2019

The movement of people from one place to another has raised certain concerns in almost all aspects of life. This phenomenon has been evident in literature especially Indian literature. An individual’s interaction with his/her immediate environment at any given time affects their beliefs. It also shapes the individual’s preferences in life as far as identity is concerned.

It is noteworthy that identity is related closely to one’s cultural heritage as well as their interaction with the other members of the society. Literary works have played a pivotal role in unveiling the different perspectives of people about hybrid identity.

This paper highlights the perspectives of two renowned Indian writers, R.K Narayan and Salman Rushdie, about hybrid. Although both writers have a broad sense of hybrid identity, Rushdie has a stronger idea of the subject due to his immigrant status.

Rushdie is an immigrant who writes about his home from another country. His movement to a foreign country gives him ability to interact with people from different cultures. His multicultural experience gives him a rather unclear picture of most of the aspects in the Indian society.

One could argue that Rushdie lives in a complexity of fictionally recreating a culture that he does not have adequate exposure to since he does not live in India. Rushdie (1992) claims that “Any writer who writes about his homeland from outside must allow himself to deal with broken mirrors, some of whose fragments have been irretrievably lost” (10).

Despite the fact that he lives in a foreign country, his interest as well as appreciation of his homeland through literature shows that he values the Indian culture-his home country’s culture. Additionally, his immigrant status requires him to uphold the standards as well as the culture of the country that he lives in an aspect that portrays his hybrid identity.

On the other hand, Narayan lives and writes his literally works from India, his home country. He has first hand information about the culture of the Indians thus he does not have to put a lot of effort on collecting the pieces or rather information for his works.

In his short story, A Passage to America, Narayan out rightly expresses his take on hybrid identity by noting that, “Ultimately, America and India are profoundly different in attitude and philosophy, though it would be wonderful if they could complement each other’s values.” He also shows his familiarity with the two cultures.

He knows what the Indian culture values most-“austerity and unencumbered, uncomplicated day-to-day living.” On the other hand, he noted that individuals who are in constant pursuit of prosperity characterizes the American society.

Despite these differences, he still believes that one can embrace the values of both communities. In this story, he explicitly gives his point of view about that when he says that “One may hope that the next generation of American-grown Indians will do better by accepting the American climate spontaneously.”

According to him, the success of the Indian people within the American community is dependent on their willingness of embracing both cultures.

Rudshie’s central theme in Imaginary Homelands to some extend shows that he does not fully support hybrid identity. In normal circumstances, when one moves to a new place, they would make effort or rather attempt to learn the culture and values of the communities living there without losing their heritage.

On the contrary, Rudshie shows that migration is a way towards the loss of one’s country, culture as well as language. He associates it with getting a different/another way of not only thinking but also speaking. Owing to this, anyone who buys his idea about the interaction with a new community may end up perpetrating unnecessary conflicts in the society.

As a child, Rudshie records that he had grown up with “an intimate knowledge of, and even sense of friendship with, a certain kind of England…” (18). He was so in love with the English nation that he could not wait visiting it.

Eventually when he visits England, instead of appreciating the community’s way of living, he continues to live in a fantasy of the dream-England. H e condemns the Britons way of living arguing that they needed to wake up from some sort of a dream.

In his story, he quotes Richard Wrights statement that “black and white descriptions of society are no longer compatible” (19). Moreover, he refers to the English culture as old and adds that the people needed to build a new ‘modern’ world out of it.

Despite his disapproval of some of the aspects of the English culture, Rudshie urges people to be open-minded or rather to get rid of the ‘ghetto mentality’. He strongly feels that people should never overlook the fact that there is a world beyond the community to which they belong.

He likens one’s confinement to narrowly defined cultures to some internal exile. This shows his recognition of the existence of other equally important cultures all over the world that one should not hesitate to explore. His argument supports Habra’s view of hybrid identity in that a fixed identity cannot be ascribed to place and cultural roots because they are the product of interrelationship and diversity (35).

As Fludernik (11) asserts, hybrid identity is “the contact between two or more cultures, between the self and the other”. Additionally, he cautions people against finding cultures that are equivalent to theirs because they will never be the same. This serves as his driving force in literature since he states that he has never had a reader in mind-he is open to all types of audience.

Narayan’s short story, A horse and two Goats, shows his undying attempt to educate people on the importance of learning some aspects of other communities. The important aspect that the writer demonstrates is the necessity of learning as well as being able to use another community’s language.

The failure to do so brings misunderstandings between the parties in question as it is evident between Muni and the American tourist. Since the American tourist could not speak Tamil and Muni (the old Indian man) could not speak English, they could not communicate even though they wanted to-each wanted to achieve something.

The old man wanted money while the American tourist wanted the statue. In this case, Narayan shows that people should not only have interest on aspects of the other culture but also they should try to learn each others’ cultural aspects. It is the key to the development of a mutual relationship and understanding between communities.

As far as the practical experience about hybrid identity is concerned, Rudshie is in a better position to address the issue. His immigrant writer’s complex situation helps him grow beyond external perceptions of differences and changes to underlying similarities and motives. This aspect of being in-between countries helps such a writer to be deeper in his/her insight as far as the nature of literature is concerned.

Being an immigrant gives the writer in question an advantage in that it enables the writer to speak and articulate facts properly and concretely on a subject of universal significance and appeal (Rushdie 12). With time, an immigrant’s grip to his/her home country’s culture tends to weaken.

This increases one’s urge to seek the self-made identity between the two contrary lives, which include time and place. In essence, it plays a fundamental role in enabling writer’s that have dual identity to work hard to have quality pieces of work about their home country.

The distance and the long geographical perspectives provide the angles that are weaved together through literature, which turns their thoughts in reality. Hybrid identity gives one the advantage of being able to appreciate two different cultures at the same time.

To answer the question to whom his stories are meant for, he says that he has no specific reader in mind but rather writes for ideas, people and events. His target audience is not only the Indian community but also to people who appreciate the diversity of cultures across the globe.

The two authors have portrayed hybrid identity in their works. I agree with Rushdie’s idea of hybrid identity and literature and feel that it is stronger than Narayan’s. The practical knowledge as well as the understanding of two different cultures gives one the ability to know the specific aspects that need more emphasis as far as upholding culture and one’s heritage is concerned.

The writer is in a better position to compose appealing and life changing works about a given culture. Rushdie, whose hybrid identity is not only by virtual of being knowledgeable about two different cultures but also by being an immigrant, has proven that one cannot forget about their homeland or rather past culture and heritage even if it is imaginary in literature writing.

Works Cited

Fludernik, Monika. Hybridity and Post colonialism: Twentieth-Century Indian Literature. Tübingen: Stauffenburg, 1998. Print.

Habra, Home. The Location of Culture. London: Routledge, 1994. Print

Rushdie, Salman. Imaginary Homelands: Essays and Criticism 1981-1991, Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1991. Print.

This essay on Narayan’s and Rushdie’s Perspectives Regarding Hybrid Identity was written and submitted by your fellow student. You are free to use it for research and reference purposes in order to write your own paper; however, you must cite it accordingly.

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The Monstrosity and Revelation Essay

July 16, 2021 by Essay Writer

Updated: Apr 15th, 2019

The word monster is derived from the Latin language; in particular, one can speak about the root monare which can be translated as to reveal or to show. Overall, one can argue that monstrosity is one of the things that attract the attention of many writers who often describe people’s reaction to something that they consider to be ugly or inconceivable.

Furthermore, they often contrast the feelings of an individual and the reaction of others. This paper is aimed at discussing several short stories by different authors, namely The Monster written by Toby Litt, Lusus Naturae by Margaret Atwood and A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings by Gabriel Garcia Marquez.

It is important to discuss what kind of things the main characters show that other characters and to the readers. These are the main questions that should be analyzed in greater detail. Overall, it is possible to argue that the each of the protagonists has a very complex inner world, but it is revealed only to the readers, but to other people. This contrast is emphasized by different writers.

At first, one can look at the Toby Litt’s story The Monster in which the author describes the experiences of a creature that has no memory of the past events. However, due to some reasons this character suspects that it is a monster. It should be noted that the writer continuously uses the pronoun “it” when speaking about the protagonist.

This is one of the details that immediately attract attention of the readers. The opening sentence of the short story eloquently illustrates the experiences of this creature; in particular, Toby Litt writes “The monster didn’t know what it was – what kind of monsters or even now and again, whether a monster at all” (Litt 241).

It should be noted that Toby Litt speaks about a creature that cannot see its own reflection. Yet, the author reveals some details about the protagonist. For example, this monster learns that it can be gentle and that it does not want to harm anything (Litt 241). More importantly, this creature is able to assess its behavior from an ethical standpoint. This is the main aspect of its behavior.

Overall, this short story describes the self-discovery of a living and thinking being. However, the readers do not know why this character is so convinced of its monstrosity. In fact, the experiences of the main creature suggest that it can hardly be called a monster. This is one of the main issues that should be taken into consideration.

One can also discuss the short story called Lusus Naturae written by Margaret Atwood. The author tells the story of a girl whose inner world is entrapped into the body of a monster. She is perceived as a “curse” by her own mother (Atwood 225). The author does not actually give many details about the physical appearance of the character; nevertheless, one can see she is rejected by others, even her parents.

It should be taken into consideration the title of this work Lusus Naturae can be translated as a whim of nature or even a “freak of nature” (Atwood 226). To some extent, she resembles the character portrayed by Toby Litt because she also does not know what she looks like and why she is rejected. The readers learn that this girl loves poetry and that she is fascinated with the books of Byron, Keats and Pushkin (Atwood 227).

This example suggests that this person can have extremely complex feelings and that her inner world is much richer that her relatives expect. However, these people detest her and the only person, who comes into her room, is the mother. However, she wants to get rid of her, and this attitude of parents is very appalling. In fact, people can even call this girl “a thing“ when they see her (Atwood 228).

Thus, it is possible to argue that the monstrosity of this character only hides her feelings from others, but not from readers who can look at the same person from different perspectives. Margaret Atwood succeeds in showing this contrast between the experiences of the protagonists and the reaction of other people who do not want to learn more about the so-called monsters.

There is another story that should be discussed, namely A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings by Gabriel García Márquez. The idea of monstrosity also plays a very important role for this writer who describes the responses of different individuals to something unfamiliar or inconceivable. In particular, the author writes about people who happen to discover a homeless old man with wings.

He appears to be senile to the residents of a village, in part because he speaks a language that they cannot understand. In their opinion, “he was a lonely castaway from some foreign ship” (Márquez 357). Apart from that, he is exhibited as an attraction by people, but they do not understand that this person can actually represent a higher power. The villagers do not even understand what kind of creature they encountered.

This response is typical of many people who encounter something or someone that they can hardly comprehend. As a rule, they just want to forget about these incidents as soon as possible. For example, even when the angel flies away, the villagers do not want to think about the importance of this event. This is how Márquez describes the experiences of a woman who sees his flight; in particular, the author writes, “he was no longer an annoyance in her life, but an imaginary dot on the horizon of the sea” (Márquez 361).

One can mention that the main character of Margaret Atwood’s story is also viewed only as a burden by her family. Therefore, people described by Márquez are not willing to receive any revelation. To some extent, this angel is also perceived as a monster by others.

It is possible to say there is a detail that can be observed in each of these short stories. The main characters are regarded only as freaks of nature or monsters. Yet, people, who surround them, pay attention only to their physical appearance, but the individuality of these creatures remains concealed from others. This is one of the main issues that one can identify. Moreover, different writers emphasize the contrast between the feelings of the protagonists and the response that they evoke.

Overall, this literary works show that monstrosity appeals to many writers. Nevertheless, they usually pay more attention to the inner world of the so-called monsters. They attempt to reveal their feelings or emotions to the readers, but they are not revealed to other characters of these short stories. To a great extent, these novellas urge readers to remember about the complexity of other people’s behavior and opinions.

Works Cited

Atwood, Margaret. “Lusus Naturae.” The Norton Introduction to Literature. Ed. Kelly Mays. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 2010. 224-228. Print.

Litt, Toby. “The Monster.” The Norton Introduction to Literature. Ed. Kelly Mays. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 2010. 241-243. Print.

Márquez, Gabriel. “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings: A Tale for Children.” The Norton Introduction to Literature. Ed. Kelly Mays. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 2010. 356-361. Print.

This essay on The Monstrosity and Revelation was written and submitted by your fellow student. You are free to use it for research and reference purposes in order to write your own paper; however, you must cite it accordingly.

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The Different Ways Virginia Woolf and Michael Cunningham Use the Concept of “Stream of Consciousness” in Mrs. Dalloway and The Hours Essay

July 16, 2021 by Essay Writer

Updated: Apr 11th, 2019

The stream of consciousness is a very complicated process which involves expressing all the thoughts, events and ideas which take place in the world. Considering the “stream of consciousness” as the direction in literature, it may be concluded that this is a very difficult trend which deserves much attention and gift.

Virginia Woolf and Michael Cunningham are two authors which are believed to be the most successful in writing the novels in the sphere of the “stream of consciousness”. Even though these authors worked in one and the same direction, their novels are different as the “stream of conscious” these authors applied to in their novels differed.

Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway and Michael Cunningham’s The Hours are two best examples of the “stream of consciousness”, however, being focused on the similar plot with the interlacement of some aspects, these two novels offer different ways of the implementation of this specific direction.

The writing of a Michael Cunningham in The Hours is peculiar by his opportunity to write not only all the thoughts and ideas of the character, but also the leaps of associations which are aimed at connecting those thoughts.

Of course, the unvoiced thought of the characters are presented, however, the main value of the Cunningham’s novel is his opportunity to present the memories. They seem to burst not just presented as a simple narration of what a character thinks.

There are a lot of such glimpses of memories from the past and the thoughts a character has in relation to the things which are noticed in the present. It should be added that the novel is not completed, however, it seems that the abandonment of writing by Cunningham is one of the best decisions as he could not complete it better.

Taking Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway as the basis for the first part of the writing (the Woolf wrote this novel is discussed), the author stars writing in the manner the book is written, therefore, the final paragraphs are to be written in such a way. However, the imitation of Woolf’s skipping between the thoughts of different characters as if she moved around the room among thoughts and ideas.

“Here on this corner (in front of what had been a head shop and is now a delicatessen) they had kissed or not kissed, they had certainly argued, and here or somewhere soon after, they had canceled their little experiment, for Clarissa wanted her freedom and Richard wanted, well, too much, didn’t he always?” (Cunningham 62) is the sentence from the Cunningham’s The Hours which perfectly depicts his way of “stream of consciousness”.

This is the sentence which shows the memories of Clarissa Vaughan in Greenwich Village about an affair with Richard. We, the readers, see this corner for the first time and it should be “a corner” for us, however, this is “the corner” as we see the things from the side of Clarissa Vaughan who has already seen those in the past.

Some of the parts in this sentence are in the present tense as even though they remind her about the past actions, they catch her attention now, in the present.

The way how Cunningham presented the memories was an innovation, an absolutely strange technique. Still, many authors have managed to copy it and now this is an ordinary, however, it does not reduce the importance of Cunningham as the follower of the “stream of consciousness” as the direction in literature.

The peculiarity of Virginia Woolf’s writing in Mrs. Dalloway is the way how she presents the flashbacks. The reader seems to consider the thoughts of the present Mrs. Dalloway who wants to organize a party, how it appears that she has returned to the past and tells the thoughts which the main character had. A moment later the stream of thoughts is returned to the present time.

The whole book is the discussion of one day from the life of Mrs. Dalloway who is planning the party. However, this is not just one day, it is the description of absolutely different what the main character thinks about, what she remembers, etc. the flashbacks Virginia Woolf uses in her writing help the reader to understand the main character better.

However, it is possible to predict that discussing one day from the life of one woman focusing on the party planning the author is going to apply to the description of the thought of this one person, however, the whole text is the spider web of different thoughts which sometimes connect and interconnect.

Sometimes it seems that the cross of the thoughts will distract you from the main idea of the discussion, however, the talent of the writer is to maker sure that the final idea is still devoted to the main idea of the novel.

Besides, the discussion presented by Virginia Woolf has nothing to do with a direct monologue. The author applies to the direct and indirect monologues, inserts the direct and indirect speech of other characters and implements the glimpses of the description.

“What a lark! What a plunge! For so it had always seemed to her, when, with a little squeak of the hinges, which she could hear now, she had burst open the French windows and plunged at Bourton into the open air. … standing and looking until Peter Walsh said, “Musing among the vegetables?”—was that it?—“I prefer men to cauliflowers”—was that it?

He must have said it at breakfast one morning when she had gone out on to the terrace—Peter Walsh. He would be back from India one of these days, June or July, she forgot which….—how strange it was!—a few sayings like this about cabbages” (Woolf 3). Dwelling upon her feelings the main character remembers about one person and then the discussion is devoted to his thoughts.

Therefore, the main difference between Woolf’s and Cunningham’s writing is the inability of the later to duplicate the way how Woolf managed to skip from one consciousness to another, from the thoughts of one character to the thoughts of another.

It may be even said that Woolf offered many streams of consciousness, while Cunningham provided one stream of consciousness but in rather innovative manner. This is, to the point, one more difference, Cunningham’s way of writing was copied and can be duplicated, while Woolf’s way to present the “stream of consciousness” remains difficult for imitation.

Being the representatives of one direction, the “stream of consciousness”, they still created in absolutely different manners, however, each of those particular techniques deserved attention as the masterpiece of the writing profession.

Works Cited

Cunningham, Michael. The Hours. Vancouver: HarperCollins Canada, 2011. Print.

Woolf, Virginia. Mrs. Dalloway. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008. Print.

This essay on The Different Ways Virginia Woolf and Michael Cunningham Use the Concept of “Stream of Consciousness” in Mrs. Dalloway and The Hours was written and submitted by your fellow student. You are free to use it for research and reference purposes in order to write your own paper; however, you must cite it accordingly.

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