Comparative Analysis of Point of View of Joseph Andrews and Emma

1143 Words Apr 27th, 2016 5 Pages
Comparative Analysis of Point of View of Joseph Andrews and Emma

Point of view is the mode of narration that an author employs to let the readers “hear” and “see” what takes place in a story.
In this essay, the point of view of Joseph Andrews by Henry Fielding and Emma by Jane Austen will be analyzed in comparison to one another. The comparison will be made on each aspect of the point of view, such as subjective/objective, partial/impartial narration and the perspectives through which the point of views are presented.
The point of view of Joseph Andrews is third person omniscient. In Third person omniscient narration the narrator lies outside the plot and knows everything about the characters, their emotions and feelings and various
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The point of view of Emma by Jane Austen is also third person omniscient, as Helen Dry writes “literary critics have identified two main points of view in Emma as that of Emma, the deluded young heroine and that of the omniscient and reliable narrator” (88) in her article “Syntax and Point of View in Emma”. Unlike Joseph Andrews, the narration is not completely intrusive; the narrator has left enough space for the readers to make their own judgments and commentary about the characters and their actions.

Whereas, at some points the narrator has provided the reader with his own commentary about the characters e.g. “The real evils indeed of Emma’s situation were the power of having rather too much her own way and a disposition to think a little too well of herself; these were the disadvantages which threatened alloy to her many enjoyments” (5). Here the narrator himself has told the reader about the evils of Emma’s situation instead of letting the reader judge them, so this is an example for intrusive narration. The novel Joseph Andrews besides narrators own perspective is narrated by Joseph’s perspective, the readers are told about the characters and happening of events as they were perceived by Joseph’s mind but mainly the perspective of narration of this novel is that of the narrator himself. “Fielding forces the reader to engage his text as a text inextricably bound to the

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