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Tobias Wolff Writing Styles in The Vintage Book of Contemporary American Short Stories

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Style

Point of View

The point of view of the stories varies greatly. Most stories are either in the first person, "I" form, or in the third person, "he" form. Tobias Wolff selected thirty-three traditionally crafted short stories for this volume and the points of view used reflect these choices. Occasionally, authors do unusual things with the point of view. In "Minor Heroism," for example, the author uses not only the first-person point of view to describe his own experiences, but also the third-person point of view to describe his father's, using the second person "you" as well. The points of view used in these stories reflect the level of distance the author wishes the readers to have from the characters. In certain cases, such as in "Lawns," the first-person point of view highlights the narrator's unreliability, revealing her molestation only halfway through the story, allowing the reader to experience...

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This section contains 449 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Vintage Book of Contemporary American Short Stories Study Guide
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The Vintage Book of Contemporary American Short Stories 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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