Analysing the Black Cat Using Labov's Narrative Structure

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For this assignment, the study aims to:

1. produce a frequency chart according to the elements of Labov’s Narrative Structure

2. discuss the way Edgar Allen Poe structured his short story to form the elements of tragedy, mystery and terror as presented in the short story

In completing the task, I will use Labov’s Narrative Theory to conduct narrative analysis of the short story, The Black Cat written by Edgar Allan Poe. The structure of this essay begins with the introduction to narrative and narrative analysis. The second part develops in the literature review where I will explain Labov’s Narrative Structure and introducing the author of the story, Edgar Allan Poe. The section ends with the discussion of The Black Cat from non-linguistic perspectives proposed by different scholars. The peak of the task is in the third part which is the analysis of the story where the discussion mainly covers the most appealing element from Labov’s Theory used by Allan Poe to structure his story to create terror and horror sentiments. The analysis will be seen from linguistic point of view on how linguistic features or forms are associated with certain functions.


Defining Narrative

The word ‘Narrative’ derives from the Latin narre which means ‘to make known’, so narratives frequently convey information. (Lacey,N.,2000). If we are using this definition, perhaps it may cover a wide range of format or genre in which may not be considered narrative as in timetable or lab report. Lacey,N (2000) points out that what distinguishes narrative from other forms is that it presents information as a connected sequence of events and these events are structured logically and causally; each event is derived from the previous event. Wikipedia, (2010) explains in a broader context that narrative is a story that is created in a constructive format in a form of writing, speech, poetry, prose, pictures, song, motion pictures, video games, theatre or...
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