Character Development In Mary Mccarthy's Short Story 'C. Y. E'

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Mary McCarthy’s short story, “C.Y.E.” thoroughly explores character development. McCarthy’s writing techniques impact the reader in a way that helps them better understand the protagonists’ emotional changes. Allowing this insight through the characters’ development McCarthy gives the reader a connection to her short story. McCarthy demonstrates such impactful character development through the plot, language and narrative of the story. To start off with McCarthy’s narrative revolves around the character telling the story. This creates a great connection to the reader and allows the reader to really hear the character’s voice. Without saying bluntly how the character feels McCarthy uses deep descritpiton, “To my intense surprise, a heavy blush …show more content…
McCarthy builds up tension through the character bringing more anxiety, “It was up to me to guess it, and I would lie in bed at night, guessing wildly, as though against time” the reader can relate to a few things in this quote. Lying awake through the night and being against time stresses anxiety in Mary helping the reader identify that clearly. From where McCarthy started with Mary, this character was ambitious and seeking out friends in hopes of being less timid and more outgoing. Yet the character has a draw back, “Now my only desire was to be alone” (McCarthy). The reader can translate this to defeat of Mary that now she has accepted the name Cye and would rather be alone because of the humiliation that comes along side. There is a slight depression within the character and that is being expressed through her desire of loneliness. Mary started with ambition and desire for friends, now she finds herself wanting to be alone more than …show more content…
Mary grows she states “I accepted the nickname, made a sort of joke of it, used it brazenly myself on the telephone, during vacations, calling up to ask a group of classmates to the movies: “This is Cye speaking.” Going from wanting friendship, to being alone the reader can now understand that Mary has grown to accept her nickname. The language in this quote demonstrates that Mary is now able to reach out to people. Making phone calls to classmates gives the reader an understanding that Mary is finally reaching out of her comfort zone and being the ambitious person she’s desired to be. How McCarthy ends the short story brings the reader to a great understanding of the characters full development. Mary says, “The words had arranged themselves without my volition, and instantly I felt that sharp, cool sense of relief and triumph that one has on awakening from a nightmare,” with the language McCarthy articulates Mary’s anxiety fading away. This can put the reader at rest because the character has accepted the nickname and has come to an end with the anxiety and tension expressed throughout the

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