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Writing Techniques in The Secret Agent

This Study Guide consists of approximately 53 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Secret Agent.
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Techniques

Unlike some of Conrad's other novels and stories, such as Lord Jim (1900; see separate entry), there is no dominating first-person narrator in The Secret Agent comparable to Charles Marlow. Moreover, the reader is not given a series of different narrative perspectives as in Lord Jim, or, as in Nostromo (1904; see separate entry). Conrad employs an apparently straightforward narrative technique in the tradition of conventional realism, a narrative method that appears deceptively simple.

Yet Conrad's narrative voice is controlled by a rigorous and masterful sense of irony. Conrad's selective use of incident tends to undercut the melodramatic and sensationalist nature of some of the story's events—a major bombing, a murder, a suicide. One result of Conrad's narrative method and tone is to deny glamour and dignity to nearly all his characters.

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This section contains 132 words
(approx. 1 page at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Secret Agent Study Guide
Copyrights
The Secret Agent from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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