Dylan Thomas combines his vibrant imagery with his adolescent experiences in South Whales and London to produce the realistic tale "The Followers". His interest in writing short stories like "The Followers" stems from the beginning part of his life.
Thomas spent his days growing up in Swansea, South Whales with his father, a grammar school English teacher. His father encouraged his early interest in reading and writing. Some of his early poetry was published in local literary writing journals. Thomas grew up in the late 1920's and the 1930's. "In the 1930's, when the trend toward social and political commentary dominated the arts, Thomas began pursuing more personal themes that originated in his own experiences" (Gunton and Harris 358). Thomas would then incorporate these experiences into his poetry. For example, the poem "The Ballad of the Long-Legged Bait" is about a fisherman he probably saw around growing up in Swansea. In 1934 Thomas began moving between London and several villages where he started drinking a lot and "epitomized the raucous image of an artist" After WW II, Thomas began writing more short stories rather than poetry (Gunton and Harris 358).
Much earlier stories focus on a theme of either birth or death. Because of this, Thomas's early period has been called his "womb-tomb" era (Gunton and Harris 358). As Thomas's writing style evolved, he would begin to experiment with new techniques. He started using vibrant images and using sound as "verbal music", creating his own poetic style (Gunton and Harris 358). However, many times Thomas will try to convey emotions that are too complex for any lyrical treatment. Other times the opposite can be true and he gives too intricate an elaboration to simple feelings (Olsen 366). These elements of Thomas' style are evident in his poems and stories, such as "The Followers".
The roster of characters in "The Followers" are the unnamed narrator, his good pal Leslie, and a girl whom they...
Cited: Gunton, Sharon & Harris, Laurie Linzen. "Dylan Thomas 1914-1953." Twentieth Century Literary Criticism. Volume 45. Detroit, Michigan: Gale Research Company, 1980. 358-359.
Olsen, Elder. "The Poetry of Dylan Thomas." Twentieth Century Literary Criticism. Volume 45. Sharon Gunton & Laurie Linzen Harris. Detroit, Michigan: Gale Research Company, 1980. 364-366.
Tindall, William York. "A Reader 's Guide to Dylan Thomas." Twentieth Century Literary Criticism. Volume 45. Sharon Gunton & Laurie Linzen Harris.
Detroit, Michigan: Gale Research Company, 1980. 370-371.
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