Jane Gardam Writing Styles in Old Filth

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Point of View

The novel’s point of view remains in third person throughout the novel. For the most part, this third person perspective is limited to a particular character. Often this character is Filth, but it also aligns itself with Auntie May, Betty, Claire, Vanessa, and Oliver. Though the ‘flashback’ chapters are sometimes painted as Filth’s memories, the narrator’s description of events still retains an authoritative tone that dispels worries about an unreliable narrator. However, because Gardam’s novel is very much about human experience and interested in the psychology of the effect of those experiences, it is important that the story be colored by human subjectivity.

The only notable exception to the narrative’s third-person perspective are the three “Scene”s that are written like a formal play script. In a novel that can sometimes feel like historical fiction or a memoir, these ‘scenes...

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This section contains 521 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Old Filth Study Guide
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