Dorianne Laux Writing Styles in For the Sake of Strangers

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Conversational Tone

Laux maintains a conversational, emotionless tone in “For the Sake of Strangers” despite the subject matter. She achieves this tone by using a stream-of-consciousness flow, few literary devices, free verse, and informal language. This casual tone indicates that the speaker is aware of her difficult situation but is numb to the painful emotions associated with it. Whether she is speaking to someone or merely recording her thoughts, she comes across as more of a narrator than a person struggling through grief. This reveals a great deal about the speaker's emotional state.

Stream of Consciousness

“For the Sake of Strangers” is written in a stream-of-consciousness style that gives the poem a very spontaneous, honest feel. Readers feel that they are listening in on the speaker's private thoughts and are given a special insight into how she perceives the world. As her perception of the world changes, her language...

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This section contains 285 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy the For the Sake of Strangers Study Guide
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