The Road by Cormac Mccarthy

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  • Topic: Encyclopædia Britannica, Cormac McCarthy, The Road
  • Pages : 3 (846 words )
  • Download(s) : 1955
  • Published : July 17, 2012
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While there's life, there's hope According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, a “flashback, in motion pictures and literature, [is a] narrative technique of interrupting the chronological sequence of events to interject events of earlier occurrence. The earlier events often take the form of reminiscence.” Cormac McCarthy makes use of this narrative strategy throughout his novel, “The Road”, to present the reader some past events in order to provide background for the current narration because the story begins after the explosion occurred. McCarthy decides to begin the narration at that point, for “the use of flashback enables the author to start the story from a point of high interest and to avoid the monotony of chronological exposition”, as the Encyclopedia Britannica accurately asserts, in this way the writer moves from one place to another in time without the need to follow a chronological order. McCarthy inserts flashback sequences to describe fragments of the man's life before the catastrophe and to explain what happened to the man's wife. By employing flashbacks, McCarthy not only provides the reader background information, but he also helps them understand the tragedy and the man’s present thought and emotions. The author describes parts of the man’s childhood in the farm of his uncle and at his home with his sisters so as to show the reader that the man misses his home and those happy moments with his family. Those moments will never return, for he has lost everything and everyone he cares, except his son. The first flashback in the novel is when the man has a remembrance of “the perfect day of his childhood” (13) with his uncle in which they go to a lake near his uncle’s farm to collect firewood. Through the detailed description of this peaceful afternoon, the reader can perceive the man’s nostalgia about the past. The same feeling is sensed when the man and his son reach the house where he grew. Having remembered him and his sisters sitting by the fire...
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