Nadine Gordimer Writing Styles in Once Upon a Time

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Point of View

The story is told in the third person, past tense, from the point of view of the narrator. Within the main body of the story, the narration appears to be a straightforward omniscient narrator but this impression is complicated by the introductory paragraphs in which the narrator features as a character. It is made clear to the reader that the story is being told by the narrator for the specific purpose of helping the narrator get back to sleep after being woken in the night, fearful that there was an intruder in their home. This framing device therefore suggests that the rest of the story is meant to be interpreted from the narrator’s perspective as something that would help them get back to sleep: a perhaps perplexing interpretation due to the story’s violent and tragic end. However, within the context of the framing...

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This section contains 873 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Once Upon a Time Study Guide
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