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Single, Female and 25: Love Among the Ruins

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Submitted By cecilia1995
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Analysis and interpretation of “A journey”

”A journey” is a short-story written by Colm Tóibín in 2006. I will focus on the protagonist, the character Mary, and her reliability by analysing the flashbacks.
I will compare the personalities in the two texts “A journey” and “The Story of a Marriage”. The latter written by Andrew Sean Greer, 2008. I will also put the relationship between Mary and David into perspective by comparing “A journey” and the photo Interior with woman and child, Poul Mathey, 1890.

The story is written from a 3rd person perspective, though the story is told from the protagonist point of view, as seen by the use of personal pronouns, such as “she” and “he”, but never “I” or “we”. As in “A journey” short-stories are often told from the protagonist point of view. In this case; Mary.
She was amused by his earnestness (…). (line 6) The quote is an example that shows the reader that the story is told from Mary's point of view. In the case we are told that She was amused. Nobody would know that expect from herself and the omniscient narrator. Though the narrator is omniscient, it does not tell the reader anything about how, for example, David is thinking. He made it clear in the way he turned that he did not wish to speak to her. (line 69-70) In this case we are only told what she thinks he feels. You can say that it is a partly omniscient narrator. It is a very typical trait for short-stories, that the story is told from one angle only. The reason for this is to make the story more clear and manageable for the reader. Though it also makes the story, and the protagonist, more unreliable.

“A journey” is based upon the flashbacks. Without the flashbacks it would just be a short-story about a woman driving a boy/man home from the hospital. The title “A journey” is a reference to, of course, the actual journey; the ride from the hospital and...

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