Comparing Story Openings of Bleak House by Charles Dickens to The Outsider by Albert Camus

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At the opening of the story 'The Outsider', the writer Albert Camus places time in the wrong order. This creates the impression that we are seeing into the character's thoughts rather than a story being told to us. It works very effectively as the paragraphs are spontaneous and not in any form of order, thus creating a mental picture in our heads of one or two day?s worth of events, as if we were remembering them ourselves.
This, however, does not apply to Bleak house. Dickens does not use any form of time, but instead decides to describe what is happening and makes the days, time, week or month irrelevant. It could be any day, but Dickens does not want time to be the focal point of his story. This is effective because our interest is
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Dickens starts the second paragraph with ?fog everywhere?. The bluntness and the repetitiveness work well together in painting a picture, making an impression in your mind that you won?t forget.
Camus, in ?The Outsider?, makes a conscious decision not to use figurative language in his story, once again creating the illusion of spontaneous thought. When using everyday language or when thinking we do not include metaphors, similes or onomatopoeias, for example, ?Today, I should not have fought Tracy in the office like a tigress who hasn?t eaten in a week, sinking my long, sharp claws and teeth into her flesh?. Or at least it is uncommon to anyway. Camus is very economical with his language.
However, Dickens, in ?Bleak House?, uses the opposite, applying figurative and descriptive language wherever he can, to create the strong mental impressionistic painting in our minds to which the narrator uses as a backdrop. Dickens also makes very subtle jokes in his opening, for example ??with flakes of soot in it as big as full-grown snow-flake ? gone into mourning, one might imagine, for the death for the sun.? This is ironic as, because of the setting of the story (post-Michaelmas) snow-flakes remind of happy Christmas-time joy, but instead Dickens personifies them, as if they have feelings about the surroundings, ?gone into mourning, one might imagine, for the death of the sun.? Dickens
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