Writing Techniques in Rabbit Is Rich

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Updike continues the use of the literary techniques he has employed in the previous Rabbit novels: the present tense, intricately detailed descriptions of even the most mundane scenes, a narrative uninterrupted by chapter markings. His use of the present tense gives the reader a sense of immediacy, an even stronger sense that we are living Harry's life along with him. In the closing scene of the novel, when Harry, who "resettles himself in one of his silverypink wing chairs," receives his granddaughter, the use of the present tense highlights his bittersweet emotions: "Teresa comes softly down the one step into his den and deposits into his lap what he has been waiting for. . . . Fortune's hostage, heart's desire, a granddaughter. His. Another nail in his coffin. His."

Updike's intricate descriptions, filtered through Harry's decidedly ineloquent consciousness, retain their ability to stun the reader. In this passage, Harry contemplates his failure...

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This section contains 568 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Rabbit Is Rich Study Guide
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