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Prado Cinema and Censors, Essay Example

Pages: 5

Words: 1408

Essay

This story also has an omniscient narrator, do you think you could tell the story with different type of narrator? How would you change the story?

An omniscient narrator adds a depth to Censors that creates suspense and drama, but I think that this story could be told from the first or second person–non-omniscient–and still hold the readers attention in a way that satisfies the depth and detail  conveyed through the omniscient voice. The witty quips of the omniscient voice, as seen in the first paragraph, would be replaced with the internal thoughts and desires of Juan if the story were told from the first person; this would create a more intimate relationship between the reader and Juan. From the omniscient voice, Censors comes through to the reader as a dark, inside joke between the narrator and the reader. We are let in on the irony and dread of Juan’s problems, but the omniscient voice creates a distance between the reader and the protagonist that allows for a dark and satirical humor to overtake the story. When you read the paragraph describing the bleak nature of Juan’s censorship job–the bombs and the poison– the omniscient voice creates such a void that one could easily mistake the story as satire, perhaps this was the intention of the author; nevertheless, this characteristic of the omniscient voice limits the narrative scope and emotional range of the Censors narrative. Choosing the omniscient voice gives a unique perspective to a story but, by using it, things like emotional range and shared intimacy are sacrificed. Put simply, the expressive range is narrowed.

If I could change this story, I would tell it from the perspective of Juan. I would focus on his internal thoughts and anxieties. I think that this would hold the readers attention while providing them with an intimate glimpse into Juan’s psyche. This perspective, in my eyes, would be more interesting and intense than using the omniscient voice–which seems to be most helpful when a story  leaves the reader needing some sort of moral guidance. The only thing that a first-person perspective could not achieve is the sense of irony the omniscient voice lends to Censors.

There are also a lot of irony in this story. Where? Discuss its importance in relation to the topic or theme.

Their is irony all throughout Censors. The omniscient narrator  makes this possible because they know everything that is happening in the story, they know things about characters that  the characters do not know about themselves. This allows the narrator to see the irony is the story. In the first paragraph the narrator points out the ironic fact that, “He was caught off guard that day and he couldn’t realize that what he thought was a stroke of luck was really an accursed trick of fate.” This is adds a light of satire to this ironic statement, setting the tone for the rest of the story. The second, and most played out, ironic situation lies in the fact that he writes a letter to his girl friend that he knows he will have to censor, and in taking the censor job, he sets himself up to achieve exactly what he intend to, which ironically leads to his downfall. It’s ironic because he sees as a brilliant plan leads to his unfortunate demise. He digs his own grave, with gusto. And from the perspective of an omniscient narrator, this ironic turn is almost comical, it appeals to our darker sensibilities. This is not very settling. If we have an omniscient god looking down on us, he is probably laughing at the irony within our actions and intentions.

Discuss the form of the story. Why is it important to be a letter?

The form of Pardo Cinema is the letter. Letters are interesting because when we read a letter, regardless of topic or style, we are aware that the communication is between two individuals or groups. This concrete dynamic never changes, without this structure a letter is not a letter. So, right from the first sentence of this letter we have an idea of what is about to follow. In  Pardo Cinema, the writer takes advantage of the pre-established concept of a letter by leaving much of the details out of the story; the reader does not have knowledge of the context that the letter is written in. This mystery holds the readers attention as they struggle to decipher the details within the prose.

Discuss the characterization of the protagonist. Does the psychological state of the protagonist change or not? How?

The protagonist is in an erratic mood during the letter. He is paranoid about the situation between his wife and his mistress.  He is searching for a solid idea of himself to cling to; when he confronts the recipient of the letter for calling him a dreamer and an eccentric he desperately hopes that she is wrong, he seems unsure about his own self image.  “Am I an eccentric, or am I a rational person?” he asks himself. By the end of the letter, his mood shifts from an erratic frenzy to a compassionate protest; he realizes his obsession with this women will never die out because his vision can not be fulfilled. This forces him to create an emotion wall between the “Miss” and himself.

What do you think of  his woman? Has his relationship change because of the obsession with the protagonist?

Yes, his relationship has changed. He is distraught because his wife or lover feels like his obsession with this mystery woman has overtaken his love and affection. He writes to this mystery woman referencing her activities “on the screen.” Based on the ending, when he tells her he doesn’t need an autograph, we can see that maybe this mystery woman is someone famous, a television personality that the author has only seen through the glass of a television set. This theory ties into the author’s erratic and crazed tone. Maybe he is mentally ill or psychologically deranged, or maybe his obsession with the mystery woman caused him to slip into this unstable head space; either way, the author does not seem to have a healthy relationship with the mystery recipient.

What is the end? Open or closed?

The end is closed. He is in prison and alone. in the final sentence he says, ” I know it’s impossible, but what would I have not provided you retain forever in his chest, the memory of that accurate stab.” This statement is made in regard to what sounds sound like a metaphorical story about the mystery woman’s death. The most significant lines is: “I know it’s impossible.” When the narrator says this, he admits defeat. He is aware that his relationship with this woman will never be a reality.

Valenzuela and Poniatowska

In both stories the authors use a letter structure. Why? What are some of the reasons that an author would have to choose this way to her narrative?

As I stated above, letters are interesting because when we read a letter, regardless of topic or style, we are aware that the communication is between two individuals or groups. This concrete dynamic never changes, without this structure a letter is not a letter. So, right from the first sentence of this letter we have an idea of what is about to follow. This familiar dynamics allows the author to reveal fewer details of the context and pretext of their story. The reader is left to fill in the blanks of the narrative and the letter format gives them a place to begin this search. The emotional state and internal reaction of the  letter sender and the letter recipient can both be decipher, but their needs and desires do not have to be explicitly stated in the narrative for the reader to begin to understand them.  The letter style allows for a subtle story, full of feelings and emotions rather than details and specifics, to engage the empathetic side of the reader while leaving just enough evidence for them to fill in the detail that was left out so that a focus on emotion could still be affective. The letter format leads the reader to make the assumptions that fill in the details of the story, the author does not have to spend their time explaining the  clinical and pedantic matters that usually reduce the emotional side of a story. The letter is intimate, so the author focuses on the self-disclosure that usually takes place in this intimate structure.

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