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On Cinematic Narrative Feature of Robert Browning’s Poetry

Author: ZhangZuo
Tutor: ZhangDeMing
School: Zhejiang University
Course: Comparative Literature and World Literature
Keywords: Browning dramatic monologue Cinematic Narrative Feature
Type: Master's thesis
Year: 2007
Downloads: 175
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Robert Browning (1812-1889)’s dramatic monologue is a type of lyric poem with grotesque characteristics. Dramatic monologues have the dramatic traits while in the mean time break through the dramatic confines of angle, space and time. The combination of these two aspects produces cinematic narrative feature.To begin with, this thesis depicts the dramatic elements in Browning’s dramatic monologues, including plot, dramatic personae and lines. It also uses narratology to analyze the dramatic methods such as scene presentation, non-person narrative and present tense in the dramatic monologue. These traits are both dramatic and cinematic.Secondly, it analyzes the narrative mode of the dramatic monologue through investigating how Browning transcends drama on the basis of poetic form. The dramatic monologues adopt subjective angles. The use of these subjective angles is one of the main differences between plays and movies. Then the thesis uses the cinematic theory to analyze how the dramatic monologue deals with space and time along with montage, the use of off-screen space, swift shifting scenes between stanzas, so as to form the cinematic structural modes such as "two-line rope structure" and "compasses structure". These narrative techniques do not belong to dramas but instead are cinematic narrative features.At last, the thesis comes to this conclusion: the cinematic narrative feature in Browning’s dramatic monologue is the natural result of combination of drama and poem.

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