Alice Munro's Narrative Art - download pdf or read online


By Isla Duncan

One of the first serious works on Alice Munro's writing, this examine of her brief fiction is proficient 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 advanced, densely layered, usually unsettling tales.

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That Robert is an outsider to Gilmore is alluded to several times in the narrative. The reader learns that his family had never lived in the township, although they owned the arcade that Robert inherited and took over. He had eventually settled in the town, having spent many years travelling, and, in middle age, married Peg, who works in the Gilmore store. She is a native of Gilmore, and has two sons from a previous marriage. The narrator explains that Robert thrives on the challenges of the isolated country north of Toronto, “the snow belt” where “winter comes down hard”; however, the contiguous observation that “people live within the winter in a way outsiders do not understand” is another reminder that the character is not native to this “different country” (p.

38); she had been befriended by the narrator, who found her eccentricities amusing. Much of the anger that Hugo’s story provokes in the narrator stems from her belief that he has appropriated Dotty, has used her profitably for his art, when in reality, he had been dismissive of her. ” (p. 47). It is made clear at the outset of the narrative that Hugo is a successful writer. The opening sentence, “I don’t keep up with Hugo’s writing” (p. 30), fulfils two purposes: it signals the contemporaneous level of narration, and enables Munro’s narrator to establish Hugo’s credentials as a writer, as she goes on to explain that his name is often seen in newspaper announcements, posters in the library, or on the front cover of literary journals she no longer opens.

Facts are tersely delivered in Changing Perspectives 39 coordinate clauses assembled in chronological sequence, with scarcely any other means of conjunction.  . There’s got to be some wrenching and slashing. But she didn’t say” (pp. 128–­29). ”12 The story moves toward a puzzling conclusion, where Robert, still the subject of the focalization, reconsiders Peg’s account of her discovery and ponders on the crucial “discrepancy, a detail, in the midst of so many abominable details” (p. 130). It transpires that while Peg had described to Robert the outstretched, clothed leg of Walter Weeble protruding in the hallway, the constable in the diner had earlier confirmed that what lay there was the man’s head, blasted apart by his shotgun.

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