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Patricia Highsmith Writing Styles in The Talented Mr. Ripley

This Study Guide consists of approximately 98 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Talented Mr. Ripley.
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Style

Point of View

The novel is told in the third person past tense from Tom Ripley's point of view. The focus on Tom is extremely close, showing his thoughts and calculations and even, at times, his unconscious motivations. Almost every time Tom tells a lie, the reader is aware of it through Tom's thoughts. This technique is extremely effective at exposing the reader to Tom's deceptions, and his cold calculations to avoid punishment, even after committing two murders.

Tom's thoughts even reveal emotions and motives of which he may not be consciously aware. Through Tom's perceptions of attractive men and drab or inconsequential women, the reader is made aware of Tom's sexual attraction towards men, his unspoken and unacknowledged latent homosexuality. This is shown as early as the second chapter, when Tom is attracted to an adolescent Dickie in family photos. In the fourth chapter, Tom wistfully remembers Dickie...

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This section contains 1,012 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Talented Mr. Ripley Study Guide
Copyrights
The Talented Mr. Ripley 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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