Essay about Narrative and Narrator: An Analysis of Joseph Andrews

Essay about Narrative and Narrator: An Analysis of Joseph Andrews

Length: 3069 words (8.8 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Narrative and Narrator: An Analysis of Joseph Andrews

      As the novel was coalescing into a distinct form of literary expression, Henry Fielding introduced a dynamic relationship between the reader and the text by developing the role of the narrator and the narrator's responsibility in shaping the overall structure of the work. His narrative creation would become a tradition explored by modern writers. By establishing the narrator as an intermediary, the narrator was free to create and comment upon characters, actions, and situations. Fielding could conceal his ideas with metaphors and fictional examples as well as with the narrator himself.  Though some have criticized Fielding's work for lacking a definitive narrative goal, perhaps the more fruitful quest was and is in discovering the goal of the narrator (Goldberg 85). Through an understanding of the narrator of Joseph Andrews,  it may be possible to discern the goal of the narrator and, thus trace the early evolution of this tradition. 

            Fielding's narrator is an all-pervasive commentator and creator. Fielding forces the reader to engage his text as a text inextricably bound to the thoughts and perceptions of the author (Bartschi 53). The reader sees only what the narrator allows him or her to see. In this manner the narrator serves as a lens through which all events and characters are viewed. For example, the narrative structure of Joseph Andrews was consciously constructed as a reaction to and a refutation of the ethical system espoused in Richardson's novel Pamela. Fielding connects his novel directly to Richardson's fictional world, using such devices as Joseph's letters to Pamela. He revives the memory of these characters and events, however, ...

... middle of paper ...


Gossman, Lionel. "Literature and Society in the Early Enlightenment: The Case of Merivaux." Modern Language Notes, 82 (1967): 306-333.

Hazlitt, William. "A Perfect Piece of Statistics in its Kind." Lectures on the English Comic Writers, London, 1819. Works, ed. P.G. Howe (London: J.M. Dent, 1931) 6: 115.

McCrea, Brian. "Rewriting Pamela: Social Change and Religious Faith in Joseph Andrews." Studies in the Novel 16 (1984): 137-49. Rpt in Joseph Andrews: A Norton Critical Edition. Homer Goldberg, Ed. New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1987.

Sacks, Sheldon. Fiction and the Shape of Belief. Berkeley and Los Angeles, CA: University of California Press, 1964.

Taylor, Jr. Dick. "Joseph as Hero in Joseph Andrews." Tulane Studies in English 7 (1957): 91-109. Rpt in Joseph Andrews: A Norton Critical Edition. Homer Goldberg, Ed. New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1987.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Analysis Of Joseph Conrad 's Heart Of Darkness Essay

- On the surface, Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness appears to be chiefly male¬-driven which leaves little room for a feminist literary analysis. The narrator, Marlow, maintains an impertinent depiction of the female characters as two ¬dimensional caricatures instead of genuine people while also striving to entrap the gender within his chauvinistic narration. However, despite the patriarchal and imperialist overtones written and narrated throughout the text, a feminist critique may reveal important ways in which the Mistress and the Intended defy this marginalized dominion....   [tags: Western world, Western culture, Gender role]

Powerful Essays
1215 words (3.5 pages)

Gender Role In Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness Essay

- Gender Role In Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness For the most part people who read Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad may feel that the novella is strictly a story of exploration and racial discrimination. But to Johanna Smith who wrote “’Too Beautiful Altogether’: Ideologies of Gender and Empire in Heart of Darkness” it is much more than that. Johanna Smith along with Wallace Watson and Rita A. Bergenholtz agree that throughout Heart of Darkness there are tones of gender prejudice, but the way that these three different authors perceive and interpret those gender tones are to a certain extent different....   [tags: Literacy Analysis ]

Powerful Essays
1437 words (4.1 pages)

Analysis Of ' Heart Of Darkness ' Essay example

- Heart of Darkness is a tale of one man’s frightening journey to the Congo named Marlow. He recalls his time as an agent for the Belgian Company. He speaks about the brutality, hatred, and evil of those trying to colonize and the native Africans that are fighting for their territory. During this journey he saves a fellow agent that goes mad due to him succumbing to mental and environmental issues and unfortunately tragically dies. Through the Narrator who tells the story and Point of View from which the story is told, we get a better understanding of the overall theme, which is the hypocrisy of imperialism, the madness it causes, the absurdity of evilness, and how anyone is capable of evil....   [tags: First-person narrative, Narrative]

Powerful Essays
1131 words (3.2 pages)

Essay on Analysis Of Conrad 's Heart Of Darkness

- Few pieces of literature have received as much acclaim and criticism as Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness. In his essay “An Image of Africa: Racism in Conrad’s ‘Heart of Darkness’”, Chinua Achebe attacks Conrad and brands him a racist for his dehumanizing descriptions of Africans. When responding to the argument that it is the protagonist Marlow, rather than Conrad, from which the novel’s racism stems, Achebe argues that Conrad’s failure to provide “an alternative frame of reference by which [to] judge the actions and opinions of his characters” is an indication that Conrad shares the same bigotry as Marlow (Achebe)....   [tags: Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness, Chinua Achebe]

Powerful Essays
973 words (2.8 pages)

Marlow’s Debut Role as Narrator in Joseph Conrad’s Youth Essay

- Story telling has been a means of communicating a point of view by a novelist to his readers and also of handing down tradition, folklore and culture. A story originates in the mind of an individual as he/she gives shape to his perception of an experience weaving the magic of his/her narration. A narrator brings to life images that excite the imagination of his/her listeners, enabling them to create a world which is inhabited by the characters of his/her stories which are not only meaningful, but serve to emulate human experience itself....   [tags: joseph conrad, narrators, story telling]

Powerful Essays
1946 words (5.6 pages)

Analysis Of `` A Rose For Emily `` By William Faulkner Essay

- Community and culture play a large part in how a person presents them self, and how they are perceived by others. Perception is a very subjective process, and personal biases influence each person’s observations. In the short story “A Rose for Emily,” William Faulkner portrays the story of an isolated and emotionally stunted woman’s desperate attempt to not be alone as told through the eyes of the townspeople. First, Emily is isolated by her father then, after his death, by the townspeople who view her as a monument to tradition and not as a person....   [tags: Short story, William Faulkner, Narrative]

Powerful Essays
1142 words (3.3 pages)

Essay on Narrative Memories, Life History, And Identity

- The past as lived, and the past as told are interconnected, yet unique entities. Huyssen (1995) argues that “the past is not simply there in memory, but it must be articulated to become memory” (Huyssen 1995:03). This is supported by the previous discussion of narrative memory formation in which experiential data needs to be processed, given narrative patterns, and transformed into that which can be verbalized and incorporated into the individual’s memories, life history, and identity. In doing so, we engage our past twice, as actors in the moment and as narrators who revive the past and give it shape for the present....   [tags: Narrative, Narrator, Narrative mode, Storytelling]

Powerful Essays
845 words (2.4 pages)

Bondwoman's Narrative: A Character Analysis of the Narrator Essay

- Trapped Narrator Bondwoman's Narrative is written by a person who called itself as Hannah Crafts. But since the book was a manuscript before the editor bought from an auction and published recently, it is not clear yet who actually wrote this book. However it is strongly supposed by its editor and other reviewers that the book is the first novel of a slave woman. The value of a narrative from a fugitive or former slave is significant in terms of historical context because of its relevance to understanding eighteenth and nineteenth century American history....   [tags: American Literature]

Powerful Essays
987 words (2.8 pages)

Essay on Analysis of Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

- Analysis of Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad When Joseph Conrad composed Heart of Darkness he created a literary masterpiece which embodied the essence of light contrasting with darkness. Throughout the novel Conrad constantly utilizes the images of light and dark and uses them to mold a vision, which the reader is then able to use to decipher the literal and metaphorical meanings of the novel. As Conrad said, “ my task which I am trying to achieve is, by the power of the written word to make you hear, to make you feel- it is, before all, to make you see.” (Crankshaw 34) In Heart of Darkness Conrad makes the reader “see” by absorbing into every aspect possible of the book images of lightn...   [tags: Joseph Conrad Novels Literature Essays]

Powerful Essays
4388 words (12.5 pages)

Literary Analysis of Joseph Heller's Catch 22 Essay

- Literary Analysis of Joseph Heller's Catch 22 Laughing in the face of war and death, literally, is one of the things that make the novel Catch-22 by Joseph Heller such an intriguing and original story. It was written in 1961, a time when, due to the fighting of the Second World War, all war novels were written with a dark and dreary tone, while still trying to continue the pre-conceived romantic notions about war. However, Joseph Heller strips away all of the romantic pretense, and pulling heavily on his own Air Force experience during WWII, presents war in its most raw, un-censored version....   [tags: Heller Joseph Catch 22 Analysis]

Powerful Essays
1786 words (5.1 pages)