Crane draws his readers into the story with tone by placing the reader into the same frame of reference as the characters. In "The Open Boat", the beginning focuse...
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... point of view, and irony. Crane use these techniques to guide the reader in the course of the struggles, both internally and externally, of mans great endeavor against nature. The tone sets the suspense of the story by building the impending doom upon the crew. The stories point of view allows the reader to gradually understand and expect the indifference of nature upon people’s lives. The reality of nature is expressed through the use of different kinds of irony. The universe is represented by the power of the ocean, and the small boat in this ocean is symbolic of man in this giant universe. The immaculate power of the ocean is very indifferent to the small boat, just as our great universe could not care less for man.
Booth, Alison, and Kelly J. Mays. The Norton Introduction to Literature.
Shorter Tenth Edition. New York: Norton, 2010.
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