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"Enduring Love gracefully bridges genres; it's a psychological thriller, a meditation on the narrative impulse, a novel of ideas." With close reference to the text, explore McEwan's use of key features and conventions of different genres of writing.

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Introduction

"Enduring Love gracefully bridges genres; it's a psychological thriller, a meditation on the narrative impulse, a novel of ideas." With close reference to the text, explore McEwan's use of key features and conventions of different genres of writing. What impact does this have on the reader? Enduring Love contains many generic conventions that do all appear to slide into one another, to make an altogether un-conventional story. I am going to explore these genres and types of writing in the book, in order to extract their key features and conventions and gain a better understanding into what grips the reader whilst reading the novel. Although not immediately obvious, Enduring Love has many generic conventions from the detective and crime genres. We have our first glimpse of some kind of detective story when Joe first calls the police, in chapter eight. This appears to subside, (although it is mentioned more than three times; there is no contact with the police), until we reach chapter eighteen. Here Joe actually goes to the police station and we have the convention of a police interview. The policeman himself is a conventional character-he has a 'large round face', and seems quite disinterested in Joe's complaint. The police station is described as a worn down, fairly lazy place, with 'friction, and a great deal of general wear and tear'. This fits the convention of a worn police station, often seen in gritty crime dramas, and thrilling detective novels. ...read more.

Middle

Joe; the suffering victim and Jed: the obsessive stalker. The whole plot is a convention in itself: the way Jed's obsession eats away at Joe's sanity, letters and phone calls, eventual violence towards the victim. It seems to hold all the conventions of such a novel. It's dark and very dramatic. The idea of scenes in the rain is used to tremendous effect in chapter ten. With Jed shouting at Joe in the middle of the street in the pouring rain; 'What do you want? You Love me and you want to destroy me. You pretend it's not happening. Nothing happening! You f---! You're playing...torturing me...giving me all your f---ing little secret signals to keep me coming towards you.' McEwan paints a vivid and emotional picture of pain in love with this scene. The person crying in the rain is another key feature in thriller books and films. Although the convention is the victim crying in the rain, but McEwan plays with the reader's mind into who is the victim throughout the first half of the novel. He crosses genres in the rain scene with the greatest of ease; it contains elements of thriller, drama, and romance. There are religious over-tones to these genres, as Jed claims he is trying to bring Joe to God. Jed gets confirmation of his decision to go on this mission with the discovery that Joe has written many scientific articles that deny the existence of God. ...read more.

Conclusion

All the love mentioned in the novel endures to the end; Jed's love for Joe, Clarissa and Joe's love for each other and Jean's love for her deceased husband. The love in the novel is not, overall, generic for a Romance novel. The only love story that is, is Clarissa and Joe's love. In itself could definitely be found in a Romance novel. Although, include all the surrounding events, and it wouldn't be so likely. Clarissa and Joe's love story feeds off these events though, so it wouldn't be the story that it is without the events. It is another highly dramatic aspect of the novel. The argument in chapter nine illustrates this high dramatic intensity. As I have said before, the drama in the novel is the key to it's successful gluing together of genres. As a result it has a great impact upon the reader. The novel may have many generic conventions, but all the conventions build up together to make the perfect drama. But this drama has something different. It contains ideas on all the sciences, religion and society. This mixture of fact and fiction leaves a lasting impact on the reader. They are left with a great, roller coaster of a novel, with un-expected twists, and a wonderful formulated plot, and things to thing about, on many issues: science in the world, religion in today's society, and also more basic things; love, relationships, and the significance of themselves and their actions. Almost any view of the novel would be correct as it has everything in it. 'Enduring Love' has a lasting and powerful effect on the reader. ...read more.

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