Don Delillo Writing Styles in The Names

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The Names is told in the first person past from the point-of-view of James Axton. James - like many DeLillo protagonists - is a highly educated, dispassionate, and cynical individual. Late in the novel, he states that he has never given himself over to any passion, particularly love.

The result of having this personality for a narrator is that the means of telling the story is analytical. We are at once part of emotional and often violent events and separated from them by a protagonist who has examined the past events now can explain their motivations. Some key passages that perfectly reflect this dichotomy of narrative are when Kathryn and James argue after he realizes that her dig is ending and when James sees David Keller shot.

One can also appreciate that fact that James Axton is a writer, and at one point a cultist discusses...

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This section contains 1,036 words
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