Jean M. Auel Writing Styles in The Clan of the Cave Bear

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Point of View

The Clan of the Cave Bear uses a third-person, omniscient narrator to explain Ay la's difficulties in assimilating into her adopted culture. The readers know exactly what is going to happen before the characters do. Because Broud's jealous feelings and Ay la's bewildered compliance are clearly drawn by the narrator, Ay la's exile from the Clan is inevitable from the moment she received her totem and stole Broud's thunder. The narration is so heavy-handed and thorough that it drains the novel of any dramatic irony or suspense. This point of view also allows Auel to develop fully her fictional ideas about Clan culture and to overload the reader with information on flint-knapping, medicinal plants, and hunting techniques. The narrator often intrudes into the novel with sociological tangents on why the Neanderthal people died out.

Setting

Auel has stated in several interviews that she started writing about...

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This section contains 749 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Clan of the Cave Bear Study Guide
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The Clan of the Cave Bear from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.