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This was not the first time that I have read this story, but it was the only time that I understood more of what was going on. When I first read this, I had a lot of trouble with how it was worded. It is written like it is in dialect, so in places it is worded a little funny. But when I relaxed and let it meld into the story, it helped define the story’s place a little more because I was able to put the boy in a slightly poorer community setting and think about what they would be concerned about at the time. It helped me disassociate from my own life and start to understand another life. Of course, it also mirrored Elvis’ early life because he came from a poorer section of the community.

Using this kind of speech is a style choice and when you use it you have a chance to alienate people. They will either get it or not get it. But if you use it right, it lets the story come to life better because it gives a certain voice to the characters. Butler uses long, meandering sentences that sound like a person is speaking. He also uses word choices that you wouldn’t hear in a story about some rich area. Words like “braying”, “whooping”, and “hollering” are the types of words that I am talking about.

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