Carolyn Forché Writing Styles in What You Have Heard Is True

Carolyn Forché
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Structure

Though generally the memoir proceeds chronologically, its structure is still loose and diffuse. Forché chooses not to include chapter headings or titles, nor to include chapter numbers even. The chapter lengths are variable, and sometimes interspersed with selections from Forché’s notebooks. These entries are not dated, nor are they contextualized. The reader has no idea if they are copied verbatim from Forché’s notebooks during this time, or if they have been modified or adapted in some way. The result is a text that moves throughout time without rigid commitment to order or structure.

In general, the text moves chronologically through time. The first third of the novel focuses on Forché’s interactions with Leonel, the middle third on Forché’s growing sense of purpose and her new experiences in El Salvador, with the final third focusing on Forché’s new life back in the U...

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This section contains 923 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the What You Have Heard Is True Study Guide
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