Character in Maupassant: Send in the Clones
Readers of fiction expect to find characters in the books which they read. Characters help us make sense of the fiction and, by what is perhaps an inevitable process of extrapolation, cause us to think about ourselves and to reflect on our own experience. As E. M. Forster puts it, ‘the actors in a story are, or pretend to be, human beings’.1 As such they assist readers in the contemplation, evaluation and possibly even the modification of their own existence. This is especially true given that fictional people are so much more definite than people in history or the people we may know. As Forster points out, an author can tell the reader anything he wishes about his characters.2 We cannot always have access to this kind of knowledge about people in real life.
KeywordsNarrative Fiction Fervent Supporter Constant Repetition Flat Character Mirror Character
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