The brooklyn follies

477 mots 2 pages
In this very passage, the narrator talks about his life. Yet, he starts doing it, by baiting the reader. That’s why he uses a mysterious air right from the beginning (repeated use of “I”). He does not give any details such as name, age or sex until the second page. But, little by little, he goes on feeding pieces of information to help us understand that the story revolves around the trite aspect of his life, in other words around the life of an ordinary man among ordinary people. Then, he goes on talking largely about personal events and problems or feelings linked to his ex-wife Edith, but also to his daughter Rachel. On that point, he probably aims at relating, or maybe manipulating, the reader’s opinion to his own, the way ordinary people usually do when they want to convince: (“yes, I suppose there is something nasty about me at times” (p2: l 24-25) So, one discovers a man who is nearly sixty years old, who he is recently divorced, and who has no real affection for his family. Most of all, the reader quickly understands the importance of him, recovering from a (lung) cancer as an elementary part for the narrative, and as a crucial clue to understanding the context that is being depicted. This context is shown from a series of “flashbacks”. It is reported in a sort of circled or “spiralised” fashion. In it, the narrator alternates the use of the past and present tenses, the way people do when they talk in life at large(see p2: l 18- 20). Indeed, the story starts with the present of the protagonist’s life, before rewinding to his past, and returning to his present. This device, repeated in an accelerated way, quickly helps reduce the idea of (burden or) weight of the past over the protagonist’s shoulder. It shows him into a sort of redemption stage that foreshadows a different future and indeed a new OVERTURE to life (p3: l 28 - to the end). As a whole, and from a descriptive angle, owing to the words used, it can easily be presumed that the narrator, who

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