• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

English Commentary on Canadian Short Stories

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

English - Canadian Short Stories This passage from the book, Canadian Short Stories in English by Isabella Valancy Crawford, is a short, fast-paced scene where a young fugitive is tracked down and arrested by three detectives, but then dies heroically whilst saving a drowning baby after his arrest. Using varying diction and detail, the writer portrays the characters in this passage in a clear manner which gives the readers a better understanding of the personality of the characters. Joe (the young fugitive) is portrayed as a "gentleman" (16) who seems to have conscience in him, for his face reflected with "deathly shame" when he was arrested. Contradicting with his character as a young fugitive, he speaks "quietly" (23) and cooperates peacefully with law enforcers, like when he "stood motionless while the detective snapped one manacle of the handcuffs on his wrist" (24). The writer first encourages the readers to question Joe's actual guiltiness by referring him as "the wretched quarry" (19) during his arrest. ...read more.

Middle

The writer then uses another animal reference in the passage - with the "child in his teeth", Joe resembles a father canine protecting his cub from harm, which again, contradicts to his character of a criminal. Other than "heroic" and "strong", the writer also portrays Joe as a brave character, like when he "smiled" whilst a detective "covered him with a revolver" and threatened to shoot (36 - 38). After his heroic rescue, the writer then attempts to minimize Joe, right until the death of that character - despite him "beating the hostile current" after the "fight between the man (Joe) and the river", the river claims victory in the end, with that paragraph (46 - 49) describing the scene with utmost detail, consisting of strong terms like "crashed upon him". With synonyms like "it reared against him like a living thing instinct with rage" and metaphors like "wallowing monster-like", Joe is reduced from a strong triumphing hero to the final metaphor - "a bruised and shattered pigmy of creation", in the mere three sentences. ...read more.

Conclusion

when the baby fell in the river, and the "little red bundle" whirling in the river (35). The last two were references to the baby, so this character may represent an omen, symbolizing tragedy, as the baby finds Joe's red flannel shirt (a symbol for danger) attractive (13). Other than the red flannel shirt, the baby is also said to be "crowing with delight" when he catches sight of the handcuffs (26). Finding these symbols of danger attractive was a hint that the tragedy may be related to the baby. The writer controls the pace well throughout the passage. Short sentences, given as a list of three, speeded up the pace when the baby fell in the river - "...a shriek, a flash of red, a soft plunge in the water" (30), increasing tension for the readers. The climax occurred in the lines 46 - 49, an extremely short paragraph describing the death of Joe. With the many events occurring in such a short paragraph, the pace is set to the passage's maximum, making this the climax of the passage. The presence of the baby is ironic in the passage, as babies usually represent birth, new beginnings and happiness. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Other Authors section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Other Authors essays

  1. Save as Many as You Ruin. Water is a symbol which reappears over ...

    Lucy is quite a contrast to her mother, this is especially seen in the subject of lying; where Issy used to lie all the time, while Lucy easily recognizes when her father is lying and obviously doesn't approve of it.

  2. English Literature Assessment Lucy Honeychurch and Stevens are two characters who represent the ...

    Cecil is also a portrayal of emotional repression and inflicts this trend on Lucy. He is a defining example of class snobbery, which is a constant feature in A Room with a View. Cecil looks down on the more radical views of the Renaissance and the lower class characters.

  1. Comparison and commentary on themes in Treasure Island compared to Crescent Island

    With that we divided the treasure in two and lived the rest of our days in comfort and happiness as rich men. Commentary for creative reading The creative reading piece, "Crescent Island" is from the pirate genre, being influenced by the English literary classic "Treasure Island".

  2. Describe the character of Lorna in muriel sparks short story, 'You should have seen ...

    Lorna's response highlights her ignorance: 'I did take this as an insult, because we call it T.V. and his remark made me out to be uneducated. I just stood, and did not answer, and he looked surprised.' I believe her boss was just trying to be informal and friendly, and her decision to ignore him was shockingly rude.

  1. Compare Junot Diaz's use of narrative techniques to present the alienation of the characters ...

    kids: "upon hearing him speak and seeing him move his body, [they] shook their heads. You are not Dominican." Oscar does not fit into the stereotype of the "fly bachatero" Dominican male, so much so, that they cannot believe that he is Dominican.

  2. Snowdrops (short story) analysis

    but also is at home with his peers, and has a sense of Geraint as much younger. The boy's friends - Edmund and Gerald The boy looks up to Edmund, who seems a little more worldly-wise. He asks Edmund what is wrong with Gerald, and seeks his advice on the strange-tasting sandwich.

  1. The Silver Metal Lover - short summary and review

    But then it comes to life. The concept is shown through The Silver Metal Lover. Silver the robot is originally a machine for entertainment. He has no emotions, no feelings and no soul and the reason for his existence is simply to "amuse and give pleasure".

  2. How far do you think Ethan Frome himself is responsible for his tragedy?

    - she was a 'new voice' that had 'come to steady him'. Zeena gave him the conversation he desired and feasibly needed. He craved simply for a person to talk to because his surroundings had isolated him. His surroundings had literally and emotionally 'killed' the people who he cared about.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work