By Isla Duncan
One of the first severe works on Alice Munro's writing, this examine of her brief fiction is expert through the disciplines of narratology and literary linguistics.
Through an exam of Munro's narrative artwork, Isla Duncan demonstrates a wealthy figuring out of the complicated, densely layered, frequently unsettling tales.
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Additional resources for Alice Munro's Narrative Art
Peg’s progress is narrated in such a way that suspense is generated, as in, “Peg walked now across the clean, pale carpet to the foot of the stairs. She started to climb. She did not call again” (p. 114), where the proximal deictic “now” brings the reader close to the scene, and the two single-clause sentences impart an urgent purposefulness to the actions. Once more, Munro arranges textual segments in such a way as to excite reader expectation. She isolates 36 Alice Munro’s Narrative Art the plangent statement, “The door of that room was wide open,” in a single paragraph, immediately succeeding it with an ellipsis; the urge to enter “that room” is denied by the hiatus, and narrative suspense is consequently sustained.
A] congestion of shapes, with black holes in them, and unmatched arms or petals reaching up” (p. 130) that turns out to be a pile of car wrecks in a junkyard. The impression of Robert as a romantic idealist prone to exaggerate, to imagine what is not there instead of noting the obvious, is sustained in the story’s ending. It is confirmed that his vision is unreliable, for what he thinks are outlandish giants are “nothing but old wrecks” (p. 131). In the description of this realization, Munro retrieves an allusion to proximity applied to Peg’s discovery of the bodies.
5 20 Alice Munro’s Narrative Art Both the aforementioned texts exemplify the genre of the Bildungsroman, whose narrator/protagonist develops greater wisdom and understanding in the course of the narrative by dint of several educative experiences and often painful lessons. ”7 Munro’s narrator neither finds comfort in nor derives any benefit from the new knowledge she gleans: what she does learn serves only to confirm the gulf between her and her sister, Maddy, and to augment the burden of her filial guilt.
Alice Munro's Narrative Art by Isla Duncan