Language techniques in Peeling the ONION
• Linear narrative – Accident to recovery
• First person narrative – gives reader insight into depth & severity of Anna’s experiences: a subjective view of Anna’s perspective
• Writing style for young audience who identifies with the age of the narrator and the world she values.
• Tone revels how Anna feels and her mood changes as she recovers
• Narrative structure:
Disjointed - Short sentences, breaks, ellipses – quick movement between events – conveys speed at which Anna’s life spirals out of control; symbolic of of how fragmented and destroyed she feels after the accident erases her old persona and her confusion as she tries to find a new identity for herself.
• Informal dialogue
Slang eg “screwed”, “bitch”
• Verbs convey the pain “jolting . . . jabbing, throbbing, screaming”
• Metaphors for the pain “an animal, a shark, a crocodile, devouring…, crunching ravaged mouths of … flesh.”p 18 Positions the reader to comprehend the foreign experience the narrator is feeling.
• Colours depict emotions so the reader can understand the strength of Anna’s emotions.
• Pain is personified as it swallows Anna, emphasising its power.
• Symbolism used throughout the novel helps the reader to understand the title, and the central idea that the novel is about the peeling off old layers, and discovering what lies inside at the core of your identity.
The earrings from Jenny have many layers – symbolic of Anna’s layers
The birth of Lisa’s child on the same day as Anna’s accident is a simple symbol of rebirth and Anna’s new identity that is born from this accident.
• Poetry identifies the main stages of Anna’s development and ties the stages together into a cohesive whole.
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