Strength for Today and Bright Hope for Tomorrow

Volume 10 : 3 March 2010
ISSN 1930-2940

Managing Editor: M. S. Thirumalai, Ph.D.
Editors: B. Mallikarjun, Ph.D.
         Sam Mohanlal, Ph.D.
         B. A. Sharada, Ph.D.
         A. R. Fatihi, Ph.D.
         Lakhan Gusain, Ph.D.
         K. Karunakaran, Ph.D.
         Jennifer Marie Bayer, Ph.D.



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Narrative Technique, Language and Style in
R. K. Narayan's Works

S. Gunasekaran, Ph.D.

The Nature of Narrative Technique

Narrative technique is one of the most important aspects of imaginative literature. According to Angus Ross a discussion of the nature of the narrative and the mode of narration can carry us to the heart of the 'meaning' of a work of fiction (qtd. Ramana 156). The author may sometimes speak in his 'own voice' or employ character or characters or narrator agents to tell the story. "The nature of the narrator-his reliability, position in relation to story… the point of view, focalization, tone and language-are very important choices for author in shaping a narrative and its meaning" (Ramana 117). The present paper analyses the narrative technique, language and style of Narayan for a better understanding of his art and its meaning.

The Humorous Tone

Narayan is a born story teller. He has no interest in complex socio-economic issues or questions of technique or form. For him only the story matters. He narrates the story both at the superficial level where the locale is dominating, and at the deeper level where general truths are incorporated in artistic terms. He tells the story with the ease of a raconteur. The very tone of his narration gives rise to humour. His narrative strategy is simple and traditional.

P.S.Ramana observes: "His narrators do not display any great variety. In terms of the implied values and attitudes, the narrator is always reliable and bears a very strong imprint of the author. He tends to focus on the comic and the ironic only" (125).

Third Person Narrative

Most of the short stories are third person narratives where the vision of the unobtrusive narrator is broadly limited to one character or incident only. He often gives the 'inside views' of the characters and speaks from a slightly higher moral position. But there is no attempt at moralizing. He remains detached and observes the characters in an uninvolved and amused manner. The narrative stance is not consciously planned by the author, but is rather a natural sequence of the personal and ideological preferences of the author (Ramana 134).

Reportorial Quality

One of the dominant features of Narayan's short stories is the reportorial quality that one finds in them. Before beginning his literary career, Narayan had worked as a news reporter to The Justice and has been a regular contributor of his stories to the popular newspaper The Hindu. Thereafter some of his stories are of the magazine-type having a kind of newspaper origin.

This is only the beginning part of the article. PLEASE CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE IN PRINTER-FRIENDLY VERSION.

The Linguistics of Newspaper Advertising in Nigeria | Women in Advertisements | Case-Assignment Under Government in Modern Literary Arabic | Teaching English as a Foreign Language to Very Young Learners: A Case from Turkey | Association of Self Fashioning and Circumstances in Margaret Atwood's The Blind Assassin | A Moral Lesson, Amoral Lesion - Sharon Pollock's The Komagata Maru Incident | Pariksha: Test by Prem Chand | Treatment of City in Nayantara Sahgal's Storm in Chandigarh | Phrasal Stress in Telugu | Stress Among ELT Teachers: A Study of Performance Evaluation from a Private Secondary School in Haryana | Willa Cather’s Portrayal of the Pioneer Virtues in Alexandra Bergson with Reference to O Pioneers! | Man-Woman Relationship in Nayantara Sahgal's Mistaken Identity | Classroom Management and Quality Control - An Action Research | Hermann Hesse's Siddhartha - A Dualist Spiritual Journey | Impact of Dramatics on Composition Skills of Secondary School English Language Learners in Pakistan | Narrative Technique, Language and Style in R. K. Narayan's Works | Diasporic Crisis of Dual Identity in Jhumpa Lahiri's The Namesake | To Teach or Not to Teach Grammar isn't the Question Any Longer - A Case for Consciousness-Raising Tasks | Cognitive Flexibility in Children with Learning Disability | Coda Deletion in Yemeni Tihami Dialect (YTD)- Autosegmental Analysis | The Enigmatic Maya in Anita Desai's
Cry, The Peacock
| Developing an English Curriculum for a Premedical Program | The Ties of Kinship in Rohinton Mistry's Novels | Indian English: A Linguistic Reality | The Unpredictability of the Sonority of English Words | Women's Representation in Polity: A Need to Enhance Their Participation | Nandhini Oza's Concern for the Tribal Welfare in "The Dam Shall Not Be Built" | A PRINT VERSION OF ALL THE PAPERS OF MARCH 2010 ISSUE IN BOOK FORMAT | HOME PAGE of March 2010 Issue | HOME PAGE | CONTACT EDITOR

S. Gunasekaran, Ph.D.
Department of English
Anna University Tiruchirappalli
Dindigul Campus
Dindigul- 624 622
Tamilnadu, India

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