The Sense of an Ending Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. How is the narrative related in The Sense of an Ending? From whose perspective is the story told? Why?

The narrative is related from the first-person perspective of the protagonist, Tony Webster. The author chooses to tell the story through Tony's eyes because the narrative largely focuses on Tony's experiences and his perception of those experiences over time.

2. Who is the protagonist in The Sense of an Ending? How would you describe this character?

The protagonist of the novel is Tony Webster, who also serves as the narrator of the story. Tony is intelligent, philosophical, but largely driven by common sense. He is a peaceable man who is considered by others at times to be cowardly.

3. What is the significance of the memory fragments that are presented by the narrator in the opening of Chapter 1?

These fragments serve to illustrate the disjointedness of memory. The pieces are like a puzzle of images that the narrator slowly puts together over the course of the novel. For instance, the hot frying pan in the water is later experienced in Chapter 1 when the narrator is in the kitchen with Mrs. Ford.

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