Lesson 1 (from Volume 1)
The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman is a narrative filled with diversions, farce and the opinions of its amiable narrator, Tristram. The objective of his lesson is to discuss Laurence Sterne's writing style in Tristram Shandy.
1. As a class, discuss Sterne's unique writing style. What literary constraints does most fiction impose upon a writer? How does his particular narrative approach differ from common fiction of the same era? Briefly discuss common writing styles and the constraints that define these styles.
2. Have each student write an article on the goal of Sterne's writing. Is Tristram Shandy designed to inform, persuade, or entertain the reader? Remind students to cite examples from the novel to support their opinions.
3. Divide students into groups of three or four to discuss the unique stylistic devices Sterne employs in his writing. (For example: the use of capitalization, dashes and...
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