Use of first-person narration in The Cask of Amontillado, and the yellow wallpaper

The Use of First-Person Narrative

The use of first-person narrative in the two works allows the reader to become closer to the protagonists because the plot unfolds directly through their eyes. This rhetoric is used by the authors of the novels to allow the audience to think, see, and feel along with the narrator. Depending on the author, the story will have varying affects on the author's emotions (Nazione and Samantha 145). The effectiveness of the story depends on how author the present the ideas in the book thus affecting the extent to which the audience is involved in both the thoughts and motivations of the protagonist in the story.

The Unbalanced Viewpoint in The Cask of Amontillado

In The Cask of Amontillado, Poe employs an unbalanced viewpoint. At the core, he aims at making the story interesting by making the reader anticipate what the other might happen next. Because the reader knows too little about the thoughts of the antagonist, the unbalanced viewpoint creates some kind of anxiety of knowing what the other character is thinking about something. Because the audience is allowed into the mind of Montresor, it is easily recognizable within the story that many individuals would have the audacity to go to ultimate extents in fanatically defending their honor. The first person narrative achieves the effect of enabling the reader to understand the motivations behind the Montresor’s ruthless murder activity. This angle of narration blends well with other stylistic devices making the story gruesomely captivating. Poe achieves the effect of justifying the protagonist’s crime by employing the first person narrative in the writing of the story. When the actor is carrying out his plans to commit murder, the first-person perspective of the story permits the reader to feel what Montresor is feeling.

First-Person Narration in The Yellow Wallpaper

Unlike The Cask of Amontillado, the author of The Yellow Wallpaper, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, uses first-person narration to bring about a particular theme and depict the suffering of women in her time. This story is so candid that the audience gets to know effects of under simulation on the mental health of the narrator and her plunge into psychosis. This is evident in the book when she writes that the narrator states nothing could stimulate her making her fanatically entangled in passion not only for the pattern but also the color of the wallpaper. "It is the strangest yellow, that wall-paper! It makes me think of all the yellow things I ever saw” (p.14) at the very end of the story, the narrator’s mental status is depicted by harnessing an ultimate level of first-person narration. Unlike in The Cask of Amontillado where the author uses first-person narration to make the reader empathize with the protagonist. Gillman uses first-person narration to explore the role of women in the oppressive environment in which they reside. She manages to explore some of the most important aspects of the society at that time such as lack of life outside her home. In her work, the writer of the book employs first-person narration to portray the narrator’s insanity at an angle that would depict the deplorable conditions of the medical facilities and professional oppression of women inherent in that time. The author is candid in a way that exposes whatever the iota inherent with the mental conditions of the narrator. She writes that "For outside you have to creep on the ground, and everything is green instead of yellow . . . So I cannot lose my way (p.5)."

Works Cited

Gilman, Charlotte Perkins. The yellow wallpaper. Penguin UK, 2015.

Nazione, Samantha. "An Investigation of First-versus Third-Person Risk Narrative Processing Through the Lens of the Heuristic-Systematic Model." Communication Research Reports33.2 (2016): 145-151.

Poe, Edgar Allan. The cask of Amontillado. The Creative Company, 2008.

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