Stylistic analysis of the text “The catcher in the Rye” (by J.D.Salinger)
Jerome David “J. D.” Salinger is an American author. J.D. Salinger was born and grew up in the fashionable apartment district of Manhattan, New York. He was the son of a prosperous Jewish importer of Kosher cheese and his Scotch-Irish wife. In his childhood the young Jerome was called Sonny. The family had a beautiful apartment on Park Avenue. After restless studies in prep schools, he was sent to Valley Forge Military Academy (1934-36), which he attended briefly. His friends from this period remember his sarcastic wit. In 1937 when he was eighteen and nineteen, Salinger spent five months in Europe. From 1937 to 1938 he studied at Ursinus College and New York University. He fell in love with Oona O’Neill, wrote her letters almost daily, and was later shocked when she married Charles Chaplin, who was much older than she.
In 1939 Salinger took a class in short story writing at Columbia University under Whit Burnett, founder-editor of the Story Magazine. During World War II he was drafted into the infantry and was involved in the invasion of Normandy. Salinger’s comrades considered him very brave, a genuine hero. During the first months in Europe Salinger managed to write stories and in Paris meet Ernest Hemingway. He was also involved in one of the bloodiest episodes of the war in Hürtgenwald, a useless battle, where he witnessed the horrors of war.
Salinger himself was hospitalized for stress according to his biographer Ian Hamilton. After serving in the Army Signal Corps and Counter-Intelligence Corps from 1942 to 1946, he devoted himself to writing. He played poker with other aspiring writers, but was considered a sour character who won all the time. He considered Hemingway and Steinbeck second rate writers but praised Melville. In 1945 Salinger married a French woman named Sylvia - she was a doctor. They were later divorced and in 1955 Salinger married Claire Douglas, the daughter of the British art critic Robert Langton Douglas. The marriage ended in divorce in 1967, when Salinger’s retreat into his private world.
Salinger’s early short stories appeared in such magazines as Story, where his first story was published in 1940, Saturday Evening Post and Esquire, and then in the New Yorker, which published almost all of his later texts.
Salinger’s first novel, The Catcher in the Rye, became immediately a Book-of-the-Month Club selection and won huge international acclaim. It sells still some 250 000 copies annually.
The Catcher in the Rye is a 1951 novel by J.D.Salinger. Originally published for adults, the novel has become a common part of high school and college curricula throughout the English-speaking world; it has also been translated into almost all of the world’s major languages. The novel’s antihero, Holden Caulfield, has become an icon for teenage rebellion and defiance.
The novel was chosen by Time among the 100 best English-language novels from 1923 to 2005, and by Modern Library and its readers as one of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. It has been frequently challenged in the United States for its liberal use of profanity and portrayal of sexuality and teenage angst.
In the novel “The Catcher In The Rye” by J.D.Salinger the first-person narrative follows Holden’s experiences in New York City in the days following his expulsion from Pencey Prep.
The scene is laid in a fictional college preparatory school in Pennsylvania.
A novel about a young character’s growth into maturity.
The red line of the story is resistance to the process of maturity itself.
The given extract depicts how after a dry and unappetizing steak dinner in the dining hall, Holden gets into a snowball fight with some of the other Pencey boys. He and his friend Mal Brossard decide to take a bus into Agerstown to see a movie – though Holden hates movies—and Holden convinces Mal to let Ackley go with them. As it turns out, Ackley and Brossard have already seen the film, so the trio simply eats some burgers, plays a little pinball, and heads back to Pencey.
After the excursion, Mal goes off to look for a bridge game, and Ackley sits on Holden’s bed squeezing pimples and concocting stories about a girl he claims to have had sex with the summer before. Holden finally gets him to leave by beginning to work on the English assignment for Stradlater. Stradlater had said the composition was supposed to be a simple description of a room, a house, or something similarly straightforward. But Holden cannot think of anything to say about a house or a room, so he writes about a baseball glove that his brother Allie used to copy poems onto in green ink.
Several years before Allie died of leukemia. Though he was two years younger than Holden, Holden says that Allie was the most intelligent member of his family. He also says that Allie was an incredibly nice, innocent child. Holden clearly still feels Allie’s loss strongly. He gives a brief description of Allie, mentioning his bright red hair. He also recounts that the night Allie died, he slept in the garage and broke all the windows with his bare hands. After he finishes the composition for Stradlater, he stares out the window listening to Ackley snore in the next room.
The imaginative writer has at his disposal a wealth of linguistic means to appeal to the reader, to express and convey his thoughts. That is why depending on the contents and the aim of the utterance we distinguish the style of the following extract. It is the style of fiction, as the purpose of the writer of fiction is to reproduce in the reader his own thoughts and feelings, to make the reader visualize and feel what he wants him to visualize and feel. The choice and arrangement of appropriate words and sentence patterns, the use of various stylistic expressive means to a great extent determine the effect the literary production will have on reader.
Among the stylistic devices used by the writer we distinguish syntactical and lexical stylistic devices. According to the stylistic analysis of the piece of writing the general character of sentences is to be taken into consideration. Depending on the object of the writer sentences are long composite with a number of attributive and co-ordinate clauses joined by means of the repetition of conjunctions in close succession, which is represented by the use of polysyndeton e.g. “Anyway, we both went to our rooms to get ready and all, and while I was putting on my galoshes and crap, I yelled over and asked old Ackley if he wanted to go to the movies.”
The so-called a signal of sequence also accentuates the connection between two sentences, the preceding one being its antecedent, e.g. “The reason I asked was because Ackley never did anything on Saturday night”. Just the same goes with “so”, e.g. “So what I did, I wrote about …”
Speaking about the conjunction “but” in a sentence, it emphasize the contrasting and contradictory idea expressed in it in relation to the previous one E.g. “I even tried to break all the windows on the station wagon we had that summer, but my hands was already broken and everything by that time, and I couldn’t do it.”
In the given extract we can find examples of repetition of the same word or phrase in a sentence which usually lends to a peculiar emotional force and emphasis to what is being said It may also make the utterance more rhythmical. Here it is used to make the speaker’s meaning clear, to lay greater emphasis on his statements so that the listeners could grasp the full significance of what he says. The repetition of the same syntactical pattern is called syntactical parallelism. It may be repeated at the beginning or at the end of the successive clauses, e.g. “The car looked so nice and white. Then I started to throw it at a hydrant, but that looked too nice and white, too.”
Parallel patterns are often used for the purpose of contrasting two opposed ideas or features thus heightening the effect of the utterance. This stylistic device is known as antithesis and may be used in one sentence, e.g. “He never got mad at anybody. People with red hair are supposed to get mad very easily, but Allie never did, and he had very red hair.”
There are various ways in which the writer or the speaker can draw the attention of the reader or listener to what he finds important and wants to bring to his notice. Emphasis in this text is also attained by: the use of the verb “to do”, e.g.“all I had to do was change Allie’s name”; the use of exclamatory sentences “What a racket”; the structure with the emphatic “it” (e.g. it was ... that, it was supposed to be…, it looked, it took him … etc.); emphatic word order (e.g. “All he did was keep talking in this very monotonous voice.”).
Among lexical stylistic means we find the following figures of speech used in the text: an epithet, a metaphor, a simile and irony.
An epithet (simile) is usually an attributive word or phrase expressing some quality of a person, thing or phenomenon. An epithet always expresses the author’s individual attitude towards what he describes, his personal appraisal of it, and is a powerful means in his hands of conveying his emotions to the reader and in this way securing the desired effect. E.g. “darling boy”, “a lousy movie”, “old Ackley”, “a bridge fiend”, “monotonous voice”, “terrifically intelligent”, “he was also the nicest”, “a nice kid”, etc.
A simile is an expressed imaginative comparison based on the likeness of two objects or ideas belonging to different classes (in contrast to a comparison which compares things belonging to the same class and is not a figure of speech). The comparison is formally expressed by the words “as”, “like”, “as if”, “such as”, “seem”, e.g. “… guys like Ackley that ate everything”; “… it was still coming down like a madman”; “it looked pretty as hell…”; “He was two years younger than I was, but he was about fifty times as intelligent.”
A metaphor is an implied imaginative comparison expressed in one word or in a number of words or sentences. A metaphor expresses our perception of the likeness between two objects or ideas, e.g“They both laughed like hyenas at stuff that wasn’t even funny”.
Ironyis a figure of speech by means of which a word or words (it may be a situation) express the direct opposite of what their meanings denote. There is only few example of irony in the text: “… and old Thurmer probably figured everybody’s mother would ask their darling boy what he had for dinner last night, and he’d say, “Steak”…”; “… I couldn’t think of a room or a house or anything to describe the way Stradlater said he had to have. I’m not too crazy about describing rooms and houses anyway.”; “it was nice, though, when we got out of the dining room”.
5.7.1.Stylistic Analysis of an Extract from Emily Bronte’s “Wuthering Heights”
Emily Bronte was born on 30 July 1818 in Thornton, Bradford, Yorkshire, England.
In 1846 “Wuthering Heights” was published to mixed reviews, although it was soon lauded as an original and innovative tragic romance.
“Wuthering Heights” (1847)
“Wuthering Heights” is a romance novel about destructive passion set in the northern English moors, a place of unpredictable weather and countryside. The novel is the story of the Earnshaw family at Wuthering Heights and the Linton family at Thrushcross Grange, a neighboring property. The stage is set when Catherine Earnshaw's father brings an orphan, Heathcliff, home to be a part of their family, growing up with, but socially beneath the other inhabitants of Wuthering Heights. Catherine and Heathcliff are passionate, unpredictable soulmates who finally meet each other in a ghostly relationship in the afterlife. When Catherine's daughter, Cathy, and Hindley Earnshaw’s son, Hareton, finally join happily in a loving relationship, the winter of Wuthering Heights becomes the spring of Thrushcross Grange.
Often “Wuthering Heights” is used to construct a biography of Emily's life, personality, and beliefs. Edward Chitharn equates Emily, the well-read housekeeper of the family home, with Nelly based on the similarity of their roles and the similarity of their names, “Nelly” being short for “Ellen” which is similar to Emily's pseudonym “Ellis”. The supposed anorexia of Catherine, who stops eating after Edgar’s ultimatum, and of Heathcliff, who stops eating at the end, is used as proof of Emily’s anorexia; support for this interpretation is found in the tendency of all four Bronte siblings not to eat when upset. Alternately, Emily’s supposed anorexia is used to explain aspects of the novel. Katherine Frank characterizes Emily as a constantly hungry anorexic who denies her constant hunger; “Even more importantly”, Frank asks, “how was this physical hunger related to a more pervasive hunger in her life – hunger for power and experience, for love and happiness, fame and fortune and fulfilment”?
One expression of these hungers is the intense focus on food, hunger, and starvation in “Wuthering Heights”. Furthermore, the kitchen is the main setting, and most of the passionate or violent scenes occur there.
Similarly, Emily’s poems are used to interpret her novel, particularly those poems discussing isolation, rebellion, and freedom. Readings of “Wuthering Heights”as a mystical novel, a religious novel, or a visionary novel call on “No coward soul is mine”, one of her best poems. The well known “Riches I hold in light esteem” is cited to explain her choice of a reclusive lifestyle, as is “A Chainless Life”. The fact that many of these poems were written as part of the Gondal chronicles and are dramatic speeches of Gondal characters is blithely ignored or explained away. Though, given passage is narrated by female character, Nelly by name, a shrewd, self-educated servant, a local woman from Yorkshire, though, she belonged to Wuthering heights unlike Joseph. So the suggested extract represents a 3d person narration, looking at the events with the eyes of this female character.
The prevailing mood of the extract is dramatic, we watch the miseries of people’s life and how young and not experienced souls desist the difficulties and show courage and restraint staying slips, and not loosing themselves completely.
The passage opens with somewhat pessimistic and bitter atmosphere. We found out about Mr. Earnshaw ailing state of health and connected with this sick perceiving of the world.
“He had been active and healthy, yet his strengths left him suddenly; and when he was confined to a chimney-corner he grew grievously irritable”.
Wuthering Heights is the place in the world where wild, stormy powers are wriggling and Catherine, Mr. Earnshaw’s daughter is one of them.
Yes, her father isn’t a good man, we could prescribe it to his bad state of health, but we found out that he’d always been strict and grave with his children, but, to my mind his treatment of him is wholly justifiably, because they always were naughty, though, not his treatment of Heathcliff, because the last didn’t even belong to their family string, as we found out from previous chapters, he was a foundling. For that reason the only people to be fond of Heathcliff and to defend him, apparently, were Mr. Earnshaw and Cathy. But his revengeful and rude traits are not seen yet in this passage so we see only him with Cathy on the lap and then uttering a heart-breaking cry, founded her father dead.
Hindly, Cathy’s brother, hates Heathcliff most of all: “…twice, or trice, Hindley’s manifestation of scorn, while his father was near, roused the old men to fury”.
Coming back to Catherine one should mention that she is a little mischievous lass, but it could be induced by her young years and genes, nevertheless she looked wicked in eyes of the narrator, I think she’d only been sassy, but very kind in her heart. She used to pretend insolence while her father believed that it was real Cathy.
She could, just as well, first irritate the father and then come to him, fondling, what had prompted him on saying the phrase like “Why canst thou not always be a good lass, Cathy?” or “Nay, Cathy, I cannot love thee, thou’rt worse than thy brother. Go, say the prayers, child, and ask God’s pardon. I doubt thy mother and I must rue that we ever reared thee”.
As for the Joseph, he is portrayed as “a wearisomest self-righteous Pharisee that ever ransacked a Bible to rake the promises to himself and fling the curses to his neighbours”. We also see him to be an exceedingly strict and gravy, that, maybe, made some likeness of him with dying Earnshaw, I think, he was “relentless in worrying him about his soul’s concerns, and about ruling the children rigidly” etc.
To my mind, he could keep his safe-control and stayed calm where it was needed, on fixation the fact of the death Joseph just seized “the children each by arm, whispered them to frame up-stairs and make little din” and told our narrator to “run to Gimmerton for the doctor and the parson”.
Notwithstanding the fact of the master’s death narrator was amazed at seeing the children calm and not being in the need to console them. Poor little things as they turned out stronger as one had supposed, they stayed firm and delicate at the same time.
Emily Bronte touches the theme of the uniting of the family together under the common disasters, the question of humanly treatment of people whom one doesn’t like prototype of which is Heathcliff and about the relationships between parents and children: is it right to divide parents’ love into unequal parts concerning to their children and even unrelated, about slights of parents authority and slip’s mischief, the effects of intense suffering: in the passion-driven characters – Catherine, Heathcliff, and Hindley – pain leads them to turn on and to torment others. Inflicting pain provides them some relief; this behaviour raises questions about whether they are cruel by nature or are formed by childhood abuse and to what extent they should be held responsible for or blamed for their cruelties.
The main idea is understood by me in such a way: I think, it’s an appearance of what how simple miseries and misdeeds and hatred lose their value in such tragic moments as, for example, the death of dear people, and unites friends and foes together in the common mourning.
My own opinion is that this novel is wonderful and the author reached a high-water mark in her writer’s talent, so it’s worth reading.
A lot of critics having their consequences acted in controversial discussing.
Initially “Jane Eyre” was regarded as the best of the Bronte sisters’ novels, a judgment which continued nearly to the end of the century. By the 1880s critics began to place Emily’s achievement above Charlotte’s; a major factor in this shift was Mary Robinson’s book-length biography of Emily (1883).
In 1926, Charles Percy Sanger worked out the chronology of “Wuthering Heights” by closely examining the text; though other critics have since worked out alternate chronologies, his work affirmed Emily’s literary craft and meticulous planning of the novel and disproved Charlotte’s presentation of her sister as an unconscious artist who “did not know what she had done”. Critics are still arguing about the structure of “Wuthering Heights”: for Mark Schorer it is one of the most carefully constructed novels in English, but for Albert J. Guerard it is a splendid, imperfect novel which Bronte loses control over occasionally.
Despite the increasing critical admiration for “Wuthering Heights”, Lord David Cecil could write, in 1935, that Emily Bronte was not properly appreciated; even her admirers saw her as an “unequal genius”. He countered this view by identifying the operation of cosmic forces as the central impetus and controlling force in the novel. He was not the first critic to perceive cosmic forces in the novel; Virginia Woolf, for one, had earlier written of Emily Bronte and her novel.
She looked out upon a world cleft into gigantic disorder and felt within her the power to unite it in a book. That gigantic ambition is to be felt throughout the novel – a struggle, half thwarted but of superb conviction, to say something through the mouths of her characters which is not merely “I love” or “I hate”, but “we, the whole human race” and “you, the eternal powers...” the sentence remains unfinished.
Personally I keep to the thought similar to Miller’s judging of the given passage: we watch plain plot, we perceive ordinary human feelings and emotions, that’s usual life as it could be with love, jealousy, hatred, insolence…
I found the characters curious, the novelist has succeeded in creating complex personages.
For example Cathy, she isn’t conceived to be “a single-line lass”. Yes, she seems some sort of daredevil so she is, she never likes to obey her father, instead, she ventures to do it, but the best thing is that this young creature wasn’t an evil, she’d only been in high spirits and maybe not always understood that she could mean some harm, she’s innocent in my eyes.
I think the most unified and rigid personage is Joseph. His correctness of the chosen path deserves appreciation though it could irritate everyone in the Wuthering Heights especially his “sermonizing and pious discoursing”. Yes. He sermonized, he flattered Mr. Earnshaw, reported to him on what has happened in the house, always laying it on sick, even “the more feeble the master became, the more influence he gained”. But we should pay tribute to him: it maybe was his preference to be calm when he closed the master’s eyes and sent another servant for the doctor and the parson. Maybe that is he who still kept the residual family chain together not letting it to fly to bits at that mourning conditions: “I joined my wail to theirs, loud and bitter; but Joseph asked what we could be thinking of to a roar in that way over a saint in heaven”.
As for the plot on the first place there is a description of the old man getting weaker, then we found out what relations regained in his house before the grieve occasion and the emotional and tragic atmosphere that touches us to the depths of hearts.
The manner of writing, to my mind, was changeable, Emily wrote imposingly, using certain colloquials and disused words: “Nay”, “thee”, “thou’rt”, “I daresay, up yonder” etc.
5.8.1.Stylistic analysis of the text from “To kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Harper Lee was born in 1926 in the state of Alabama. In 1945-1949 she studied law at the University of Alabama. “To Kill a Mockingbird” is her first novel. It received almost unanimous critical acclaim and several awards, the Pulitzer Prize among them (1961). A screen play adaptation of the novel was filmed in 1962.
This book is a magnificent, powerful novel in which the author paints a true and lively picture of a quiet Southern town in Alabama rocked by a young girl’s accusation of criminal assault.
In the novel “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee, the scene is laid in a small American town in Alabama. The given extract depicts a trial of Tom Robinson, a Negro, who is in the criminal dock on a capital charge of assaulting a white girl. His defending counsel Atticus Finch is an experienced lawyer and a progressive-minded man known for his humane views. His taking up the case was an act of courage in the American world of prejudice.
Atticus goes to the courthouse to defend the Negro, Tom Robinson, and the children follow him.
The story is told by Jean Louise, Atticus’s daughter who watches the progress of the trial and being a lawyer’s daughter doesn’t fail to feel the atmosphere in the court-room and sees the futility of her father’s efforts to win the case.
The children begin to notice that Atticus is undergoing a change because of the stress of the case. He does, however, remain calm and rational at all times.
It is Atticus’s speech to the jury that takes up the best part of the text. Moved by his sympathy for the Negro and desire to stand for his rights Atticus speaks most convincingly and with a great emotional force. He points it out to the jury that the case is simple enough. Having thoroughly considered every piece of the evidence submitted Atticus exposes the false testimony of the witnesses and proves that the defendant is innocent while the guilt lies with the white girl, the chief witness for the state. It is she who has tempted the Negro thus breaking the code of the society she lives in. Next she throws the blame on Tom Robinson thus putting his life at stake. Because of the nature of her bruises, Atticus proves that it would have been physically improbable for Tom Robinson to have inflicted these injuries. Her bruises were all on the right side of the face and would logically have been caused by a left-handed person. Tom Robinson’s left hand is small and shriveled and totally useless. As Atticus confirms, Tom’s worst fault turns out to be that he was sorry for a white woman. No Negro in the South has the right to feel sorry for anyone who is white, even though the Negro might be superior to the white person. Atticus condemns Tom Robinson's accusers for their hypocrisy in that they count on the prejudiced attitude towards the Negroes. He characterizes the assumption that the Negroes are basically immoral as a groundless and deliberate lie and claims there is no such thing as moral superiority of one race over another. Then he refers to the notorious statement of Thomas Jefferson about all men being created equal. He cautions against using the statement out of the context and underlines that no matter how very different people might be considering their inborn qualities, their education or their station in life they ought to be equal before the law. In conclusion Atticus emphasizes the great moral responsibility of the jury.
When the verdict comes in, the Negro man is convicted even though it was obvious even to the children that he is innocent.
Scout mentions that there is a dream-like quality about the events of this affair. In truth, however, this is reality and not a dream because an innocent man will be found guilty because of prejudice, even though it seems like that should be a dream. Although the children cannot understand all of the events now, this trial is one of their most significant learning experiences because they are too young to have developed the prejudices which contribute to Tom’s conviction, but they do see the prejudices in action and are aware of the terrible effects that such prejudices can have on the true course of justice.
The recognition of Atticus’ efforts for justice must be left to the Negro people. Jem and Scout have already witnessed that most of the white people disapprove of what Atticus has done, but the Negroes support him by standing when he leaves the courtroom.
It is a well-known fact that the purpose of a writer of fiction is to reproduce in the reader his own thoughts and feelings, to make the reader visualize and feel what he wants him to visualize and feel.
That is why depending on the contents and the aim of the utterance we distinguish oratorical style of the given extract.
Oratorical style is especially noted for abundant use of expressive means and stylistic devices because it is often the effective use of the language that plays a major part in winning the listeners over the speaker’s side. Atticus’s speech in court can serve as vivid example of it.
The choice and arrangement of appropriate words and sentence patterns, the use of various stylistic expressive means to a great extent determine the effect the literary production will have on the reader.
Speaking about the general character of the sentences Atticus Finch uses in his speech we should note the following: they are long composite sentences with a number of attributive and co-ordinate clauses joined by means of the conjunction “and” which in some cases does not merely show that two ideas are connected but has a more emphatic meaning corresponding to the Ukrainian conjunction “àëå”, e.g. “She was white, and she tempted a Negro”.
Another “and” begins a paragraph which is not a common way of beginning a sentence or a paragraph in English. E.g. “And so a quiet, respectable, humble Negro ... has had to put his word against two white people’s”. “And so” (the Ukrainian equivalent may be “² îòæå”) used in the above sentence stresses the fact that the next point Atticus is going to speak about is logically connected with the previous paragraph, that it is the development of the same thought.
Practically the same can be said of the conjunction "but" which begins a paragraph in this way emphasizing the contrasting or contradictory idea expressed in it in relation to the previous paragraph. E.g. “But there is one way in this country in which all men are created equal – ...”
The relative pronoun “which” beginning the paragraph “Which, gentlemen, we know is in itself a lie ...” called a signal of sequence also accentuates the connection between two paragraphs, the preceding one being its antecedent.
It should be mentioned that repetition is often used in oratorical style to make the speaker’s meaning clear, tolay greater emphasis on his statements so that the listeners could grasp the full significance of what he says.
In the given extract we can see the repetition of the same syntactical pattern which is called syntactical parallelism or a parallel structure e.g. “...some people are smarter than others, some people have more opportunity..., some men make more money than others, some ladies make better cakes than others –...” A word or phrase may be repeated at the beginning of successive clauses or sentences (anaphora), e.g. “...she persisted in breaking it. She persisted and...”; at the end of succesive clauses (epiphora), å. g. “...he swore out a warrant, no doubt signing it with his left hand, and Tom Robinson now sits before you, having taken his oath with the only good hand he possesses – his right hand”; the last word of a clause may be repeated at the beginning of the next clause (anadiplosis), e.g. “...she has merely broken a rigid and time-honored code of our society, a code so severe that...”
Sometimes the repeated word may not be the word itself but its derivative (root or morphological repetition), e.g. “... in the cynical confidence that their testimony would not be doubted, confident that you...” Note that syntactical parallelism and a repetition of the same word often go together.
Parallel patterns are often used for the purpose of contrasting two opposed ideas or features thus heightening the effect of the utterance. This stylistic device is known as antithesis or contrast and may be used in one sentence, e.g. “Youth is hot and bold, age is weak and cold” or in a number of sentences or paragraphs, e.g. “...on the assumption that all Negroes lie, that all Negroes are basically immoral, that... Which, gentlemen, we know is in itself a lie.... a lie I do not have to point out to you. You know the truth, and the truth is this: some Negroes lie, some Negroes are immoral, some...” The parallel constructions combined with the repetition of the same words emphasize the contrast expressed by the words “all” – “some” and the antonyms “lie” – “truth”.
To make his point plain or to show how vital it is a writer sometimes arranges his ideas according to the degree of their importance or emphasis, the most important, from his point of view, coming last. This stylistic device is known as gradation, or climax, e.g. “This case is not a difficult one, it requires no minute sifting of complicated facts... To begin with, this case should never have come to trial. This case is as simple as black and white”. The speaker expounds his point by repeating the same idea in a different way.
There are various ways in which the writer or the speaker can draw the attention of the reader or listener to what he finds important and wants to bring to his notice. We have already mentioned some of them – syntactical parallelism and lexical reiteration, antithesis and gradation as well as special uses of conjunctions. Emphasis in this text is also attained by:
the use of the verb “to do”, e.g. “...it (the case) does require you to be sure ... as to the guilt of the defendant”;
the use of interrogative sentences in Atticus’s speech (e.g. “What was the evidence of her offense?” and others);
the structure with the emphatic “it” (e.g. it was ... that);
emphatic word order (e.g. “All around us and in the balcony on the opposite wall the Negroes were getting to their feet”);
the use of the negative pronoun instead of the negative particle (compare the sentences “...she was no child hiding stolen contraband” – she was not a child; “I am no idealist” – I am not an idealist).
Among lexical stylistic means we find the following figures of speech used in the text: an epithet, a metaphor, a simile and irony.
An epithet always expresses the author's individual attitude towards what he describes, his personal appraisal of it, and is a powerful means in his hands of conveying his emotions to the reader and in this way securing the desired effect. E.g. “a rigid and time-honored code, a code so severe...”, “the cynical confidence”, “the evil assumption”, “Atticus’s lonely walk”, “Judge Tailor’s voice... was tiny”.
A simile is an expressed imaginative comparison based on the likeness of two objects or ideas belonging to different classes. In the given extract the comparison is formally expressed by the words “as”, “like”, “as if”, “such as”, “seem”, e.g. “This case is as simple as black and white”: “I saw the jury return, moving like underwater swimmers”; “...and it was like watching Atticus walk into the street, raise a rifle to his shoulder and pull the trigger...”
À metaphor expresses our perception of the likeness between two objects or ideas, e.g. “...Atticus wasn’t a thunderer” (to thunder is to make a loud noise, therefore a thunderer is one who thunders or utters something in a loud voice resembling the sounds made by thunder); “...it requires no sifting of complicated facts”; “...whoever breaks it is hounded from our society...”; “No code mattered to her before she broke it, but it came crashing down on her afterwards...”; “... a phrase that the Yankees... are fond of hurling at us"; "...and it was like watching Atticus walk into the street, raise a rifle to his shoulder and pull the trigger...” (we find here a simile, as has been mentioned above, which extends into a prolonged metaphor).
From these examples you can see that a metaphor can be expressed by different parts of speech. Note that practically every simile can be compressed into a metaphor and every metaphor can be extended into a simile.
Irony is a figure of speech by means of which a word or words (it may be a situation) express the direct opposite of what their meanings denote, thus we often say “how clever!” when a person says or does something foolish. Irony shows the attitude of the author towards certain facts or events. There is only one example of irony in the text: “And so a quiet respectable, humble Negro who had the unmitigated temerity to feel sorry for a white woman...”
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