Anderson And Hemingways Use Of The First Person Essay

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"It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing."At one point in his short story, "Big Two-Hearted River: Part II", Hemingway's character Nick speaks in the first person. Why he adopts, for one line only, the first person voice is an interesting question, without an easy answer. Sherwood Anderson does the same thing in the introduction to his work, Winesburg, Ohio. The first piece, called "The Book of the Grotesque", is told from the first person point of view. But after this introduction, Anderson chooses not to allow the first person to narrate the work. Anderson and Hemingway both wrote collections of short stories told in the third person, and the intrusion of the first person …show more content…

Nick tries as hard as he can, but the fish snaps the line and escapes. Then, as Nick thinks about the fate of the trout which got away, Hemingway writes, "He felt like a rock, too, before he started off. By God, he was a big one.

By God, he was the biggest one I ever heard of." This sudden switch to first-person narration is startling to the reader. Until this point Hemingway had solely used third person narration, but he did it so well that the reader feels as one with Nick. It is not definite whether this is Nick or Hemingway speaking. It could easily be either of the two.

Hemingway doesn't include, "he thought," or, "he said to himself," and so it is unclear. The result is the same regardless. Using first person narration at this point serves to make the story more alive, more personal. It jolts the reader into realizing the humanity of Nick; he is no longer the object of a story but a real person. If Nick is making so much stir over it that he speaks directly to the reader, he must feel passionately about it. Or if Hemingway is so moved by the size of the trout that he exclaims at its size, I can only accept that Nick also feels this excitement.

The sudden intrusion of the first person narrator makes the story more complete and its only character more life-like. It also brings the reader into the story as a listener. Sherwood Anderson's collection of short stories, Winesburg,

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