"The Force of Circumstance" is a story which tells about a man, Guy, and his wife, Doris. They live in Malaysia. Guy moved there right after his schooling and has lived there for years. He left once and he came back with his white wife, Doris. The story is not written in the first person, it is a narrator who tells you the story. The language use is normal and the tone of voice a little bit ironic.
When Guy was young he was very alone at night. Night after night it was the same. One evening his boy asked whether he'd like to have a girl to come and live with him. First he had doubts about it, but he said yes after all, and she stayed. They had three children. After several years he sent her back to the village because he was leaving. Their 'relationship' was over. Then he returned with his new white wife Doris, but after a while she leaves him and the Malay woman returns. The story is carefully constructed like a five-act drama with tension rising to the climax of Guy’s disclosure speech. 1. exposition ---- introduction to the exotic scenery and the harmonious couple 2. rising conflict --- the confrontation of characters 3. climax ---- Guy’s monologue and Doris’s reaction 4. falling action ---- Doris’s long suffering and period of indecision 5. denouement ---- Doris’s leaving and the restoration of the former circumstances Themes
White men actually had a general fear of ‘going native’ which means adapting to the native way of life. So many white men in the colonies insisted on wearing European clothes or retained their typical European lifestyle. They were afraid to lose their own identity in having too much contact with the natives which would threaten their authority and power. According to imperialist ideology they felt superior and an intermingling of the races had to be avoided. In fact it was very difficult for the white men in the colonies to resist the temptation of the native women because they were the only females around and their exoticism was very attractive. Isolation and loneliness often made the white men forget the standards of behaviour and their fear of ‘going native’. Point of view
The third-person narrator tells the story from an unlimited omniscient point of view, moving freely in and out of the protagonists’ minds. He observes, but does not make judgements. You‘ re an ugly, little fat man, Guy, but you‘ve got charm- ирония Alliteration many a man is making
domingo 6 de julio de 2008
THE FORCE OF CIRCUMSTANCE (W. SOMERSET MAUGHAM)
SHE was sitting on the veranda -waiting for her husband to come in for luncheon. The Malay boy had drawn the blinds when the morning lost its freshness, but she had partly raised one of them so that she could look at the river. Under the breathless sun of midday it had the -white pallor of death. A native was paddling along in a dug--out so small that it hardly showed above the surface of the water. The colours of the day -were ashy and wan. They -were but the various tones of the heat. (It was like an Eastern melody, in the minor key. which exacerbates the nerves by its -ambiguous monotony; and the ear awaits impatiently a resolution, but waits in vain.) The cicadas sang their grating song -with a frenzied energy; it was as continual and monotonous as the rustling of a brook over the stones; but on a sudden it was drowned by the loud singing of a bird, mellifluous and rich; and for an instant, -with a catch at her heart, she thought of the English blackbird. Then she heard her husband’s step on the gravel path behind the bungalow, the path that led to the court-house in which he had been working, and she rose from her chair to greet him. He ran up the short flight of steps, for the bungalow was built on piles, and at the door the boy was waiting to take his topee. He came into the room-which served them as a dining-room and...
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