THE LIFE AND OPINIONS OF TRISTAM SHANDY
LAURENCE STERNE (1713 – 1768)
3. How much control do you think the writer has over the mixture of digression--both kinds mentioned above--and the Shandy history? Does he guide his pen or does his pen guide him? I think Laurence Sterne is the master of experiment, he uses wide range of different means to confuse the reader for example retard or speed up the process of plot, interrupt the way of story (preface is put between 12th and 21th charter of the third book, leaves out a sheet to boost the reader´s imagination). He guides his pen very precisely trying to catch our attention. 25. Tristram Shandy begins with a reference to sex and ends with another such reference. Is there any importance to this, or is it just the author's bawdiness? Author parodies wittily the traditional beginnings of novels. All the plot construction is a parody because the whole Tristram´s life story is composed of embarrassing moments. I also think the author wants to prove that sex is an inseparable part of our lives. 21. Is the writer unable to present a straightforward story, or does he deliberately frustrate the reader? If the latter is true, what justification can there be for that? As I have mentioned above, Laurence Sterne the master of experiment, it´s an intention to confuse the reader, he doesn´t concentrate on life stories of character but on the sequence of thoughts and senses, internal movement of human mind. He laughs off all the classicism literary theories and represents many methods of modern literary output. 16. Discuss the character of Mrs. Shandy. Is she as stupid as she seems? Does she have redeeming qualities? Mrs. Shandy (Elizabeth) is said to be the stereotypical sentimentalist woman, retaining the female gentility of the time. From Tristram's description, I guess that she is a rational but stubborn woman, who in the crucial moments proves her strengths and disagrees with her husband. She´s a...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document