Setting in Alias Grace
Setting is one of the most important elements exists in every kind of fictions, it represents the time, place, and social context that raised by the novel. By using setting, author creates particular moods, character qualities, or features of theme in order to make his or her work more attractable and vivid. Margaret Atwood successfully uses setting to organize the case of Grace. It is a murder case that happened in Toronto at 1843, due to the background of that period, the case is quiet arguable. However though the nature, human material and culture setting used in the novel, readers are able to experience Grace’s tragic life and establish specific mood about Grace Mark.
First of all, the natural setting is playing an essential role to make readers pay attention to the environment and understand how it affects Grace - the main character’s personality. In other words, the nature setting tells the reason for Grace lose the hope of life and something actually makes a contrast with events occur in the story. “Peonies come up through the loose grey pebbles, their buds testing the air like snail’s eyes, then swelling and opening, huge dark-red flowers all shining and glossy like satin.” This is description of flowers at the beginning of the books, it foreshows Grace’s life. Grace is a smart girl and supposes to be success. However, she grows up in a wrong family; it let she ends up in the jail. It also used as symbol of blood in order to drop a hint for the merciless murder. Once, the Grace family moved to the New Land – Canada, the nature setting creates a hopeless atmosphere. “When we did see it,…,it was all rocks and trees, and looked dark and forbidding, and not fit for human habitation at all.” “The city was not in a good situation, being flat and damp…The rain was soft and warm, and the air had a stick and swampy feel to it.” The adjectives, swampy stick dark and forbidding are describe Canada by the author. They create sentimental...
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