The Narrative Arc Essay

1567 words - 6 pages

From Mark Twain to Amy Tan, American authors have refined the narrative form beyond what the Greeks and subsequent practitioners of the literary form have achieved. One of the most anthologized American narratives--"The Most Dangerous Game"--provides evidence of the American talent for incorporating narrative conventions, multiple conflict types, and language that achieves symbolic purpose. Thus, readers of this Richard classic are given a lesson in perfect narrative form.
Clearly, the author provides evidence of a sinister plot line in the exposition phase of the story. In the beginning of the story the author Richard Edward Connell, Jr. introduces the protagonist character named Rainsford and through the mood of the story there is evidence that can conclude he is going to have trouble on Shipwreck Island. For instance, the shift between the yacht and the jungle setting plays a role in creating this sinister mood. Since Rainsford along with Whitney and the ship’s crew are on a yacht surrounded by the Caribbean Sea and the sound of gunshots are heard by Rainsford can imply that he can anticipate trouble. In addition, he falls off the yacht which is surrounded by darkness therefore; his only hope for survival is the island. The island which seems to be inhabitable and the fact that footprints are around suggest that he might get into some kind of trouble on the island. Secondly, the introduction of the Russian antagonist character General Zaroff in a American story set in the 20th century builds up the perception that there is a sinister plot. Especially, since in the 20th century Americans sent 12,000 American troops to Russia to fight on the side of the Czars against the Red Army. Interestingly, the American forces in Russia suffered more attacks and problems from the White Army than from the Red Army. The American commanders in the field reported that the Czarist reign of terror was far more horrific and disturbing that the actions of the Reds. The American forces also discovered that the vast majority of Russians sympathized with the Bolsheviks and supported the revolution. In the end, this ordeal was considered one of the most ill-conceived interventions in American history up to that time. This would explain why Zaroff tells Ransford after the debacle in Russia I left the country, for it was imprudent for an officer of the Czar to stay there. Furthermore, the setting provides a more detailed look at Zaroff characteristics. For instance, the refined side is shown by the large estate Zaroff owns. Only a wealthy man could afford to have such a large estate on his own land. On the other hand, the dark side is shown because he is purposely isolating himself from civilization therefore, he can be perceived as a social outcast or loner that is hiding something enigmatic. Furthermore, General Zaroff’s advanced knowledge of Rainsford provides a plot twist that heightens the sinister plot. For instance, He tells Rainsford "It is a very great...

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