Analysis of Chapter 28 in Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island

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‘Treasure Island’ was written by Robert Louis Stevenson and published in 1883, although it previously appeared in children’s magazine ‘Young Folks’ between 1881 and 1882 under the title of ‘The Sea Cook’ but it was later changed to ‘Treasure Island’. The novel is split into five parts-I will analyze chapter twenty eight, it is the first chapter of the last part of the novel called ‘Silver’, and Silver is the main character in this chapter. While analyzing this chapter I want to look at its contribution towards the story as a whole, the themes and messages in this chapter. I also want to look at Stevenson’s craft: to look at the devices he employs to make his story interesting and exciting. I will strip the chapter right down to the bare flesh and examine every inch.

Chapter twenty eight, like the majority of the novel is written as a first person narrative, retrospectively which makes the narration more interesting because Jim can comment on his actions with the advantage of hindsight. Dr Livesey narrates for chapters sixteen, seventeen and eighteen. This is because Jim is ashore at this stage and would not be able to recount the action on board the boat. Stevenson created Jim as the narrator this allows to get a personal relationship with him, allowing us to better understand and sympathise with him as a character. Robert Louis Stevenson has spelt phonetically which adds to the vividness of the characters because it reads how the accents would sound, and so it makes the novel come alive and so in turn making the plot more exciting. Stevenson writes with a detailed knowledge of nautical terms and pirate code, an example of this is when Silver says ‘as for the schooner’, Stevenson also knew about the pirate code that states ‘Eve...

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...at doing so because of Silver’s unlawful background. Long John Silver looking at Jim as if he were his nephew, seeing himself in the young boy and that is partly why he is risking loosing his captaincy to save Jim.

Chapter twenty eight is intense and riveting, it addresses Stevenson’s main themes of ‘Treasure Island’, the search for good role model and whether the pirates have truly honourable characteristics. It is a chapter that is exciting and riveting, one that demonstrates Stevenson’s expert mastery of writing, his ability to captivate, excite, enthral, and raise questions and to make his readers love his stories.

Bibliography

Primary Sources

‘Treasure Island’ by Robert Louis Stevenson

‘Robert Louis Stevenson: a Biography’ by Claire Harman

Secondary Sources

www.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treasure_Island

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