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Mark Haddon's Novel Analysis

Paper type: Analysis
Pages: 5 (1127 words)
Categories: Critical Thinking, Dog, Human, Philosophy, Social science, Society, Sociology, Thinking, Truth
Downloads: 23
Views: 14

In Mark Haddon’s novel “The curious incident of the dog in the night-time” the protagonist, a 15-year-old boy named Christopher Boone talks primarily about his quest to uncover the truth about the murder of a dog. This is told through the unique perspective of Christopher who lives in a small English town of Swindon and deals with the trials and triumphs of living with Asperger’s an autism spectrum disorder. The novel is told through the firsthand narration of Christopher, as Haddon explores his understanding of Asperger’s syndrome.

Through doing so Haddon gives insight into life with Asperger’s and creates a stimulating unique perspective of the world where his use of the protagonist is unlike any other and creates a unique view of the world.

Within this extract Haddon explores Christopher’s social disorder, vital importance of trust and his logical views on the world. In this way Haddon, to a large extent is able to craft an effective and unique piece of fiction, that enables the audience to understand and emphasise with Christopher’s perspective to eliminate some of the social stigma that surrounds Asperger’s.

The extract and the novel as a whole highlight the importance of trust to Christopher, painting the unique voice of Christopher in the novel. Due to Christopher’s Asperger’s syndrome he is unable to lie this fact makes it increasingly hard to trust other people as he cannot understand lies as they are illogical. Haddon foreshadows this with the use of emotive language in the quote This is another reason why I don’t like proper novels, because they are lies about things which didn’t happen, and they make me feel shaky and scared. And this is why everything I have written here is true.

The mention of his emotions clearly states how he feels about lies. When Christopher does trust someone, it is extremely important to him that this trust is kept, if it is broken, he will find it almost impossible to forgive the person. This unique perspective on trust is the reason Christopher is so dramatically affected by his father lying about his mother’s death and killing the dog. Haddon reflects the struggles of growing up within Christopher’s plan to run away from home and live with his mother. Christopher’s childish nature is juxtaposed with his logical thinking within this scene as Christopher has an immense reaction to his father’s lies but is able to logically discern the best decision concerning where he is going to go and live. Haddon utilises an Imperative sentence in the dad’s response to Christopher finding out the truth in the quote You have to learn to trust me And I don’t care how long it takes thus, this reveals the damage his lies caused with his relationship with Christopher, Christopher’s father reveals his determination to win back Christopher’s trust despite the realities of life. Christopher’s father wants to heal their shattered relationship any way he can. As a result, trust is a constant theme that outlines the unique nature of Christopher’s character and how he is affected by Asperger’s.

Furthermore, Chris’s difficulty with communication with the normal people of society presents some of the broader social problems that Chris experiences on an everyday basis. As a logic driven character, he is emotionally simplistic. As a result, he is unable to adequately comprehend and therefore respond appropriately to idiomatic expressions such as you’ve pulled my leg and also metaphors because they are not, what Chris perceives, to be the truth and that they are lie. As is quite common to those on the Autism Spectrum, Christopher does not have well developed emotional intelligence and his social interactions are limited.

He also cannot relate to others with empathy or sympathy and finds the intricacies of a social world highly confusing and illogical at times I thought this might be another rhetorical question, but I wasn’t sure. I found it hard to work out what to say because I was starting to get scared and confused. Haddon utilises emotive language to emphasis on Christopher’s response to a simple question. The emotions of fear and confusion reinforces his unique personality and social disorder. In this quote the reader gains direct insight into the way Christopher’s mind works. Christopher’s difficulty imagining what other people mean by statements with multiple interpretations leads to social misunderstandings throughout the book. Hence his social disorder is large factor that communicates his unique voice.

Likewise, Christopher has a unique logical perspective, where he best understands situations that he can explain logically rather than emotionally. His admiration for sherlock Holmes is evident in the novel where Christopher mentions And then I thought that I had to be like Sherlock Holmes and had to detach my mind at will to a remarkable degree so that I did not notice how much it was hurting inside my head. the use of simile in the quote highlights how he tries to be like the detective Sherlock Holmes, because Holmes approaches mysteries from a logical perspective and seeks an explainable truth. The relation between sherlock and Christopher, is that they are both able to disconnect themselves from the world and enter their own mental space. Like Holmes, he disconnects in order to think clearly and without distraction.

Furthermore, since Christopher struggles to understand the unspoken social rules that most people don’t have to think about. Whenever Christopher feels overwhelmed by the world around him, he turns to logic for help to understand it and to reason out his next steps. For him, he believes logic is the path to truth. Similarly, the simile is utilised to make a comparison between prime number and life. I think prime numbers are like life. They are very logical, but you could never work out the rules, even if you spent all your time thinking about them. Prime numbers follow an order that Christopher finds pleasing and satisfying. In fact, Christopher prefers prime numbers so much that he uses them to order the chapters of his book.

As he explains here, logic and order equal the basis of life, he might not be able to work out all the rules of life, but he believes they exist. As a result, Christopher’s strong identification with logic, colours the way he views life. He cannot accept the idea of life as chaotic and arbitrary. Christopher loves math in part because it’s logical. He particularly likes prime numbers, and even uses them to number his chapters, a decision that might seem illogical to other people, since chapter five, for example, is the third chapter.

In conclusion, Through the unique characterisation of telling the truth, social disorder and Christopher’s logical views. These ideas adopt the audience to understand Christopher’s situation and how well they link the reader’s real life experience.

Cite this essay

Mark Haddon’s Novel Analysis. (2019, Aug 20). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/mark-haddons-novel-analysis-essay

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