Freshman Composition 102
April 7, 2013
Efficient use of Point of Attack in “A&P,” “The Story of an Hour,” and “The Chrysanthemums.”
In all forms of audience target dramatic expression of one’s mind there must be a very strong point of attack. No matter a book, movie, speech, or play. Some form of a catch or a hook must be present to gain the interest of the audience. The point of attack is no simpler said than the first action or thought of the story that creates the first emotional response, therefor setting some initial tone or understanding of the first intentions. Moving on from this point something must happen to add drama to the situation, setting the audience at unease or worry known as precipitating dramatic events. There is no set number of these events as there may only be one or many depending on the story, but there must be one to form rising action up to the climax of the story. Shortly following climax we see the falling action or resolution. It is my intentions to discuss three very efficient examples of this by John Steinbeck, Kate Chopin, and John Updike; specifically in “The Chrysanthemums,” “The Story of an Hour,” and “A & P.”
Beginning with Steinbeck’s “The Chrysanthemums” we see the point of attack very clearly and vividly in the first paragraph as he paints us a picture “The high grey-flannel fog of winter closed off the Salinas Valley” … “like a lid on the mountains had made of the great valley a closed pot.” This truly puts the reader inside of the story putting them inside if the valley before we even meet the first character, the 3-D of novel one might say. He follows this up with “A light wind blew up from the southwest so that the farmers were mildly hopeful” … “but fog and rain do not go together.” making even more clear the setting and demeanor of the story. Several very important precipitating dramatic events lead up to the climax starting with...
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