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Narratological Strategies on One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest

Author: LiJinXiang
Tutor: FengMei
School: Hebei Normal
Course: English Language and Literature
Keywords: One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest Narratology narrative situation narrative time narrative voice
Type: Master's thesis
Year: 2011
Downloads: 54
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Cuckoo’s Nest1 is often regarded as the masterpiece of Ken Kesey, which established his reputation in American literature. Since its publication in 1962, it has attracted many attentions from many scholars and readers who have made a lot of research on it, such as its themes, techniques and so on. Though it was popular at that time, it received attention from few readers in China, even the less study in terms of Narratology.The thesis makes an exploration on narratological strategies in Cuckoo’s Nest based on narratological theories and related rhetoric fictional theory and mainly focused on its narrative situation, narrative time and narrative voice.This thesis contains three chapters.Chapter one focuses on the narrative situation in Cuckoo’s Nest concerning on the issues of narrative person, focalization and narrative manner. The different position of narrative person determines various point of view; focalization offers many ways to convey information of the story and narrative manners present the story directly or indirectly.Chapter two concerns on the narrative time of the novel, which deals with three aspects with the concrete examples: order, duration and frequency. Because of order, the story is unfolded in flashback or flash forward; duration can adjust the speed of the narration; frequency determines the times of narration in dealing with different events.Chapter three is focused on the narrative voice from two aspects, one is the voice generated from overt narrator’s interventional comments and setting descriptions; and the other is from covert narrator’s reports, guidance on character’s actions and his absent state. Narrative voice of different degree renders the story with ebbs and flows.The employment of these narrative strategies deepens the theme of the novel and makes it more influential.

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