The Drowner by Robert Drewe essay

1691 Words Nov 13th, 2013 7 Pages
The structure of a novel enables it to embody, integrate and communicate its content by revealing its role in the creation and perception of it. A complex structure such as that of Robert Drewe’s work The Drowner, published in 1996, refers to the interrelation or arrangement of parts in a complex entity1. Drewe’s novel is a multi-faceted epic love story presenting a fable of European ambitions in an alien landscape, and a magnificently sustained metaphor of water as the life and death force2. The main concerns of the novel include concerns about love, life, death and human frailty. These concerns are explored through the complex structure of the novel. That is, through its symbolic title, prologues, and division into sections. The …show more content…
Both prologues are erotic, passionate and sensual. Yet one is a dream whilst in fever and the other is lust. They are also somewhat illusions and concerning Angelica. As a result they provide insight into her complex character, of her ‘actressy’ qualities and of her playing her part6. Ultimately the prologues are heavily based around the exploration of love. The first prologue is highly sensual and fluid though it is short lived by the danger symbols of “hot flowers and foreign hot climate birds”, here the ‘watery fluidity’ of the prologue is contrasted with the sudden heat and ‘foreignness’. This foreignness is encountered later in Africa where Angelica becomes ‘depressed’ and their intimacy is lost. In the prologue their relationship is purely physical; it is the need for more than sex in Africa that crumbles their relationship. Again the dangerous and destructive nature of love is represented, in relation to Angelica and Wills opposing lives presenting the view that their relationship is lust not love. In the second prologue too Angelica is the central focus, however she is physically absent and only through Will’s fever and dreams is she present. There is a clear contrast here in the absence of Angelica and the loss of a fluid tone. Instead it is onerous, unsettling and agitated. It is only once Angelica is gone that Will becomes sick, and it is then that he thinks of her. Here human frailty and human frailty as a product of love

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