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Analysis of Fictional Techniques Paper Team C’s Paper is an Analysis of Fictional Techniques on The Child’s Story by Charles Dickens, The Gift of the Magi, by O. Henry, and The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe. The team focused the following three techniques: 1) Nature of Narration; 2) Nature and level of description included in the story; and 3) Use of Setting. Several questions have been answered concerning the different effects produced by each of the authors’ use of these techniques.
Content of the Story and How it is Written and Told The Gift of the Magi
The Gift of the Magi is an unselfish love story that is shared between a husband and a wife and the true love they felt for each other. This story has a surprise effect with several unanticipated circumstances taking place in this story. The Gift of the Magi is about a married couple who live in a large city and only have an income of a mere a week.
The ending of this short story comes as a bit of a surprise and focuses on what is true and real with love. There is a lesson learned at the end and drives the reader to focus on his or her inner being.
The reader is told that those who give, get and those that give of themselves are the wisest. The Tell-Tale Heart While reading The Tell Tale Heart it is very hard to decipher between how the story was written and the contents of the story.
The main character of the story does not change. In the beginning of the story the narrator experiences conflict between not having a life with passion and being a madman. Throughout the entire story the narrator focuses on murder and the evil that he sees. The insane person who is revealed in the beginning of the story is proven to be the insane person at the end of the story.
The Child’s Story The nature and the content of The Child’s Story and how it is written are through the grandfather telling a story to his grandson and referring to himself as the traveler. The contents of the story are told in such a way that the reader can visualize what it occurring and what the writer feels. The form in which the story is told is through memories of the past, present and future time spent with the family who the writer loved so dearly. The content of the story starts when the child is very young. Then the child becomes a young boy and then a young man.
The writer describes all the occurrences that the grandson and grandfather encounter together. The story goes on to read that the grandson becomes a young man and falls in love, gets married and becomes too busy to spend time with his grandfather. The grandchild sits beside his grandfather in the end of the story and the grandfather is having flashbacks about his life with his family. Do Form and Content Work Against One Another? The Gift of the Magi In the story The Gift of the Magi, by O. Henry, the form and content seem to work against one another. This is due to both characters selling items that meant so much to them.
In the end, the reader sees that their love is what caused the purchase of the gift in the first place. The setting, being in the home and the store, was perfect for the story. The narrator could have been anyone, because it was spoken in third person. The Tell-Tale Heart In Edgar Allan Poe’s story, The Tell-Tale Heart, the narrator is the character who killed the old man. There was no surprise that the narrator was the character in the story because he spoke of himself throughout the story. The setting was in a simple room; the nature and level of description was rather bleak.
In the end; however, the story came together. The Child’s Story The Child’s Story, by Charles Dickens, begins with a child narrator who speaks of a journey of someone who meets people of different ages, doing different life activities. He first meets up with a child, then a boy, then a young man, a middle aged man, and an older man. Each person is doing something different, but soon disappears. In the end the child tells the grandfather, “I think the traveler must be yourself, dear Grandfather, because this is what you do to us, and what we do to you” (Mills, pg 98).
The nature of narration technique is that the reader is unable to tell that the narrator is a child, or the grandchild of the traveler. The story is written with a surprise ending that brings warmth to the reader. The use of setting technique is used with the setting in the woods; which makes it easy for the reader to believe the characters disappear once they have shown the traveler what they want him to see. The nature and level of description technique is clearly shown when the narrator describes each character that is introduced to the traveler. Why Did the Authors Select these Techniques?
The Gift of the Magi O. Henry wrote his story, The Gift of the Magi, in third person point of view and mostly from Della’s perspective. Henry did not need to write the story from Jim’s perspective because both characters were going through the same emotions. Another reason Henry chose the third person point of view was because he wanted the reader to understand the significance of what each character was giving up. The Tell-Tale Heart Edgar Allan Poe chose the first person point of view for The Tell-Tale Heart because he wanted the reader to feel exactly what the character was feeling.
The story would not have been the same if it was spoken in another point of view. The reader was able to feel like they were in the mind of a madman and this could only be done through first person. Poe had very little dialog in The Tell-Tale Heart. Therefore, being very descriptive and bringing the reader into the mind of the character could only be done through first person point of view. The Child’s Story Charles Dickens’ story, The Child’s Story, was written in third person point of view. However, in the very last sentence of the story the point of view is changed to first person.
The reason Dickens chose these points of view was so the reader felt like a story was being told to them. In the end, the reader is able to see who the story is written about and why it is written about that person. Dickens deliberately waited until the end of the story to reveal who the story was about. This gave the reader the opportunity to read the story with an open mind and the opportunity to experience the characters without any biases. Relationship between Techniques The Gift of the Magi O Henry’s Gift of the Magi, seems to combine elements from each of the other two stories.
The story is constructed to tell a tale that allows the reader to relate and empathize with characters as well as watch them from a distance. Gift of the Magi is written in third person omniscient format. Although the narrator does not take place in the story but rather has the ability to read and relate the emotions and drives of the characters. The setting in this story is transcendent. This version of the story takes place in a small apartment; however, and it is easy to imagine that this particular story be told from any setting.
In Gift of the Magi, the story itself is what is most important, but relies heavily on description to draw the reader in. The narrator’s ability to describe the emotions and motives behind the characters action is what draws readers in and allows them to relate to the story. The Tell-Tale Heart The techniques in Edgar Allan Poe’s story work together to strengthen the whole piece. This is the only story, out of the three, told in first-person and written so that it is best read aloud. Both of these factors ensure that the reader takes the narrator in and that the reader shares his ideas and emotions.
Poe also limits the setting so that the only two people who exist throughout most of the story are the narrator and the old man; further allowing readers to identify with the narrator. Each of these factors was equally important to the success of the story. If any one of these factors were changed, the story would have suffered and would have been altered into something unrecognizable. For example, if Poe had chosen to tell his story from a different perspective, he would not have been able to infuse the story with the sense of mad urgency that currently drives it. The Child’s Story
In contrast, Dickens’ The Child’s Story moves more slowly and uses third person narration to separate the reader from the piece. As a result, the whole story is watched from a distance as opposed to participated in. The story also differs from Poe’s The Tell-Tale Heart because the setting described is expansive and seems to stretch throughout time and space. In the story, the setting appears to be the most important factor. The descriptions not only provide backdrops for the individuals in the story, but also give insight into the feelings and emotions of the characters.
For example, in paragraph three Dickens describes the weather in its various forms and the character’s acceptance of each change. This hints towards the carefree joy of childhood which the narrator shares with the small boy in this portion of the story. What if One Specific Technique Changed The Gift of the Magi Gift of the Magi paints a clear description of Mr. Dillingham’s poverty without saying he was poor. Henry uses repetitive description to portray the mood of Della; which explains why everything was gray. The author’s choice and order of words reveals the time frame and general location of the story.
There is a moderate amount of dialogue between Della and Sofronie and between Della and Jim. If the narrator told the story strictly from Della’s perspective then it would not have the feel that they both loved each other unconditionally. The story would probably slant more towards Della’s love and generosity. Instead the story shows equal love for each other. The Tell-Tale Heart Poe’s description of the story teller, in The Tell-Tale Heart, standing in the doorway with his head poked half-way through the window was extremely vivid.
The descriptors he uses to describe the fear and the beating heart are extremely powerful. The reader may find it hard to determine whose heart is actually beating loudly and rapidly; the story teller, the man with the strange eye or the reader. The ticking of the watch and the pounding of the heart create powerful imagery. This story is told in first person from the murderer’s point of view. The story has very little dialogue, but is told with such passion that it was not obvious until searching for quotation marks.
If this story was told in a different person it would not have had the psychological impact it had. First person allowed the reader to experience the author’s disgust over the eye, the excitement in planning the murder, the suspense of committing the act, and the fear of getting caught. The Child’s Story The Child’s Story vividly describes the various times, seasons, and events that occur through the many phases of life. Each chapter of life is clearly represented from childhood through old age. Dickens’ paints each season with brilliant colors and detail as an artist sketches upon a canvas.
The events through life are described in a manner that takes the reader down a memory lane of their own childhood through the joys and heartbreaks of life and death. The nature of the narration is a story that is basically told with very little dialogue. The story is beautifully told through each phase until the next character is introduced. At that point a few sentences of very short dialogue occur and the then the narrator returns to story telling. Since the narrator is telling the story it appears unbiased and makes the reader feel as though it is his or her life slipping by.
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