Historiographic Metafiction in \ Essay

1387 Words May 18th, 2007 6 Pages
Historiographic Metafiction in The Wars

The writing of history has consistently been under heavy scrutiny, however it is justifiable. When someone reads a book of history they are never getting the honest-to-god truth. This is because along with the writing of history comes bias. Historiographic literature is a style of writing that is found in The Wars, it is a style the critiques or gives somewhat of a commentary on the writing of history. However the historiographic nature of this book is only half of the major concept. This book, The Wars, is also an example of metafiction. Metafiction is a type of writing where the book itself addresses the devices of fiction. A book can be classified as such if it satisfies one of the common
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Her head was bowed and her right hoof was raised as if she rested" (Findley 5), is repeated again close to the end of the book. What this does if gives the story a sort of frame, keeping all that is know to have for sure happened within it. This is confirmed in the very next line when the narrator states "Here is where the mythology is muddled" (Findley 189). The frame that is within this book is not only important structurally but thematically as well, because we have this frame that contains all the information that is know within it anything outside of it becomes purely speculation. In some cases we have Robert making a heroic getaway and others where he is caught and subdued. This shows how important frame of reference is, as even though there is a book being written about his life the fine details are still askew. Frame of reference is also very important in the recording of actual historical events.

History, in essence, is the study of ourselves. People record it so that we may learn from our past and improve our future, and because history is of this monumental importance it is a shame that when looking at recorded history one can never be totally sure that what they are being told is 100% accurate. This is because there are biases, based on age, ethnicity, and personal experiences, as well as misinterpretation of events, limited perspective, and emotional issues being put on the information by both the people who are retelling there accounts of what

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