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Thursday, July 27, 2006


In the last few days we have been talking about point of view. Mostly first person and third person limited. We focussed mainly on mysteries. We read Agatha Christies Witness for the Prosecution in which our trust of the barrister narrator. By creating the trusted narrator Christie lulls the reader into a false sense of security. This security causes us to gloss over minor incrongruities. Modern television detective dramas do the same thing. Law & Order, Cold Case, and CSI all create relatively two dimensional characters for the detectives yet we trust their knowledge and skill. In constast Frank, the lawyer in Sidney Lumet's Verdict, is a down on his luck alchoholic and we can't trust his judgement. In fact it is this lack of good judgement that leads him to being betrayed. Without the limited narrator plot twists would be impossible.

In Poe's Pit and the Pendulum we are dealing with a first person narrator. Anytime a story is told in first person the reliability of the narrator should be drawn into question. In the case of TPATP the narrator is most likely swooned into a delerium. There is even some question that the narrator is still alive.

So as for the blogs I hope that some of them turn out like what I have written above. If the students show any understanding of how POV can aid in their understanding of the plot and hence the theme I will be happy.

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