Carson McCullers Writing Styles in Wunderkind

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Technically, "Wunderkind" depends greatly on the skillful and effective way McCullers establishes Frances's point of view in the reader's mind. Allowing us "inside a character's head" usually leads us to identify and sympathize with that character; but in this case, it is essential to our understanding and central to the story's development. Through flashbacks and internal monologue, the reader is led to discover the elements of Frances's crisis (things we could learn in no other way) and to share her claustrophobic terror.

Perhaps the best way to appreciate this young writer's achievement is to consider how little "action" her story really contains. All we are given is a teenager's piano lesson, lasting perhaps half an hour. The main character is mostly inarticulate, and almost paralyzed by anxiety. She is nervous when she arrives, grows increasingly flustered as her lesson goes poorly, and finally storms out of...

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This section contains 864 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Wunderkind Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
Wunderkind from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.