In Language, The Term ‘Conversation’ Is Understood As A

1567 WordsMay 16, 20177 Pages
In language, the term ‘conversation’ is understood as a discussion between two or more people. This interactive form of verbal communication enables news and new ideas to be shared and exchanged. However, in literature, a conversation is far more nuanced; a result of written work having a greater context beneath the words. Furthermore, the words chosen to construct a conversation within the literary text is forever a creation by the author. It is this authorial imitation which transcends the most primitive form of human interaction into a literary discourse. Consequently assigning the meaningful role of conversation in the English language into an equally significant role in written literature. In Katherine Mansfield’s book of short…show more content…
This is a poignant element presented through conversation within the story as it is exclusively Laura who gains an empathetic understanding, towards the problematic class divisions at the heart of the text. The phonetic dialect within the conversations in The Garden Party, further exemplifies the central theme of class division. In Laura’s conversation with her sibling Laurie, she asks him if he enjoys parties, to which he replies ‘Ra-ther’, a transparent indication of an upper-class dialect which adheres to a formal speech pattern. Through the conversation, Mansfield contrasts the character of Laurie with the working class phonetics of Miss Scott’s sister, whom Laura speaks to at the funeral. ‘I 'm 'er sister miss’ she reassures Laura, in a broken dialogue which reveals her working-class background. This contrast through dialogue in the conversation further supports the perspective that the role of conversation is to provide reality within the story. The phonetic language differentiates the classes and effectively mimics the real speech patterns of working and middle class people. In Miss Scott’s conversation with Laura as she affectionally refers to Laura as ‘young lass’ an informal term which is contrasted earlier in the text, when Laurie dismisses his sister affectionately referring to her as ‘old girl’. ‘Old girl’ is an informal term of endearment used amongst social
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