The setting is a crucial element in a story. It is used to determine how characters behave, the outcome and plot of the story, and the themes the story revolves around. Many authors provide us with clues to where the story takes place. As a reader, we have to understand the point of the clues the author gives us. For example, if the time of the story takes place during the Great Depression, the author might want its audience to know that the characters are living under a poor environment. In the story, "The Lamp at Noon", the author situates the story at a farm that has no crops growing due to years of droughts and sand storms. The storms are so intense that a lamp must be lit even at noon.
During the story, the setting has contributed to how the characters act. It makes them confused and insane because of fear of the death and hopelessness. For example, the farmer's wife, Ellen, is very cautious about her baby son. She tries her best to protect her son from the deadly dust fluttering everywhere. However, it is because of Ellen's over-cautiousness that led to the baby's death when they are trying to escape the stormy weather. Ironically, Ellen doesn't realize her baby's death. In the story, the setting also isolates the character from the outside world. Consequently, the characters, especially the wife feels lonely. In addition, the setting reveals how different characters react to the environment. The husband is determined to enrich the farm once again, while the wife is eager to give up and move back to the city.
The setting also determines the outcome and plot of the story as the storm is the main focus of the story. The setting has caused most of the conflict, which is deciding whether to leave the unprofitable farm or not. The hot, dry weather is symbolic for the quarrels between the farmer and his wife. The isolated setting also gives us a sense of hopelessness. Because the strong wind and sand storm has made the environment very dark, only a little...
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