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Colm Tóibín Writing Styles in The Master

This Study Guide consists of approximately 50 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Master.
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Points of View

The Master is told entirely in the third person, though it focuses exclusively on Henry James. Every thought and every event is from Henry's perspective, and the novelist adopts a tone appropriate to Henry's disposition to describe his world. The narrator knows only what Henry knows, such that when Henry encounters Webster and Lady Wolseley in a curious conspiracy, the nature of their relationship is never made explicit.

The book is often heavy with a sense of doom, with the multiple deaths of Henry's friends weighing down the narrator's perspective. The narrator largely observes the same sense of decorum that Henry values so highly, doing his best not to pry and subtly insinuating bits of gossip rather than relaying them outright.

Setting

The narrative takes place between 1895 and 1899, though much of the novel is comprised of flashbacks. The "present-tense" sections take place mostly in England, at...

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This section contains 541 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Master Study Guide
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