The fifth child by Doris Lessing
In this extract, Harriet after introducing Ben in a special institute ( North of England ), she decides finally to visit him, see his "new life".
* Firstly, we are in an atmosphere a little oppressive when is in car: "grey wintry rain"
*Then, we discover the landscape, the atmosphere of the place which is bland and sad.
- "dark stone" - "grey drifting rain" -"the rain was now a cold deluge"
* But also how is the building or rather his description:
- "regular windows" - "three rows of them were barred"
- "hand-written card - "this oppressive building"
- "silent" - "the big door was shut to exclude her"
-"dark caverns of a corridor" -"smell of disinfectant
-"absolute silence" -"highthin screaming"
* Several action verbs are perceived, they allow text to be more alive.
For example: "she entered" / "she rang and waited" / "the door abruptly opened" / "saw" / "stared"/ "nothing happened" / "rang again"/ "returned to the corridor .
In this way, the author makes the text more lively and the reader discover the place without to grow weary.
* The characters or persons are also described. Indeed, the young girls who opens the door Harriet "wearing jerseys, cardigans, and a thick scarf" ; "curly yellow hait"; "blue ribbon" ; "tired"
* Harriet presented to the little girl " I'm Mrs Lovatt and I've come to see my son".
From my point of view this extract is essential because the reader becomes aware of the woman is Harriet. In spite of her reluctance to Ben we can detected that Harriet doesn't hate his own son in reality. She reveals to readers his maternal instinct.
To my mind she loves Ben because she comes to see. So, she takes interest him, she wants to see if he lives in good conditions.
Extract of this novel (link)
Tags : she, his, this, harriet, extract
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