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How the techniques used by Jane Gardam to create the narrative in 'Stone Trees' support the presentation of her themes.

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Introduction

Gill Mould How the techniques used by Jane Gardam to create the narrative in 'Stone Trees' support the presentation of her themes This essay will cover the themes portrayed, and techniques that Gardam has used in this short story to covey her ideas. 'Stone Trees' is about a widow coming to terms with her grief, and combines flashbacks and the random thoughts of the narrator to convey the story, this then does not need a lineal story line. We learn how the narrator is feeling by Gardam's use of interior monologue, 'we shall talk you/I later', as if we are reading her fragmented thoughts. As the story is written in the first person narrative, it allows the reader into the mind of the narrator, and shows the story from her point of view. The narrators recent loss of her husband dominates the story, it begins on a journey to meet old friends on the Isle of Wight. ...read more.

Middle

Gardam's use of characterisation allows us to see the two women on the train, as important characters. Although seemingly innocent, these characters represent the narrators realisation about her own life, 'you have to stand up for yourself and get free of men'. She realises that in her relationship with her husband he had never been or intended to be faithful to her. Also how she has been controlled by her husband; she has lived her life through him. She was prepared to accept that she would have never been the only woman in her husbands life, 'I knew.... I'd never have you to myself'. With Gardams use of language, the reader can visualise the settings and the people she describes. She uses onomatopoeia 'splashy sea', and alliteration with 'black-edged tickets on blazing bouquets' and 'Criss cross deck, criss cross water'. ...read more.

Conclusion

Gardam allows us the reader to pick up the clues hidden in the story. She tells us how Anna 'she cried a lot', which we can see is the reader has being given the clues by Gardam that that the boy, Peter might be the narrator husbands. This is compounded by the fact that she believes her husband has had a son, with Anna. However, it is an important moment when she realises this, "The boy laughs and looks at me with your known eyes'. Towards the end of the story the husbands betrayal becomes easier to cope with, when she realises that a part of him will always live on, 'takes life again'. The change of the mood implies the narrator is now able to move on with her life, but will always be reminded of her husband, through Peter. The narrator's response to the child is important because it shows the first time she feels close to a person other than her husband: 'So Now that you are' ...read more.

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