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Narrative Critical Analysis - Essay Example

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Introduction Every human being feels that his life is important and valuable. Hence, everyone feels that his life story should be told to others. Memoirs are the means through which people tell their life stories and let others know about their personal life…
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Narrative Critical Analysis
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Download file to see previous pages Patricia Hampl has done a brilliant job in explaining how memoir is a picture of reality and imagination and hence, an attempt by a writer to find his hidden ‘self’. Through her essay, Hampl proves that a memoir is not just a life story but also a medium of self discovery as it helps the writer not only in understanding the hidden self, but also in harmonizing the images and emotions stored in the memory, and in attaining the most desired inner peace. Analysis From my experience of writing a memory narrative, I have learnt that the event in the past reveals a lot more than what I have thought it to be. It has made me realize that events that leave an emotional impact on us are the ones that leave more impact on the memory. It has shown me that most of the times, it is not the event but the interpretations we make about them that makes it more or less important. Also, one single event can be seen differently by different people as they see it through their own personal angle. This fact has been explored in a clear manner in the essay ‘Memory and Imagination,’ by Patricia Hampl. Memoir is an account of true events in life and hence, it is not fiction. Fiction is completely imaginative while memoir is real life story told by people. However, according to Hampl, memoir also has touch of imagination to it. Hence, it has shades of fiction. This is the reason Hampl also says that the first draft of the memoir is important. Hampl says that the first draft is like a fresh look and revelation of the truth. It is written without the barriers of the conscious mind and hence, has a deep meaning to it. The first draft is the real thing as it is not written with careful observation or restrain. When the writing flows without any carefulness, then it brings the hidden feelings, interpretations and emotions of the writer. This brings the deep hidden emotions and thoughts to the surface. This helps the writer in discovering his own self which is usually hidden in the unconscious mind. Hence, Hampl also says that if the first draft is written with careful attitude, then it is a failure. By this she means that carefully written first draft does not bring the hidden feelings in the unconscious and fails to help the writer discover his own self. Hence, Hampl also says that heart is the boss of writing. According to Hampl, the conscious and rational mind takes a back seat while writing. Memoir is written with the aid of memories of past. However, memory is not static or frozen aspects of life. They are molded into shapes and colors which are added to it through person’s eyes and mental opinion. When a person writes, his intuition, his wishes and his dreams are fulfilled. The memoir is written without the pressure of being completely truthful. Hence, a writer tries to fulfill his unfulfilled wishes and desires in the past by showing them as fulfilled in his memoir. Moreover, when a person writes a memoir, his rational mind is overpowered by his irrational and imaginative mind. Moreover, the fears, disappointments, weaknesses and sadness, which is guarded by the rational mind, are given an outlet through the memoir. This shows that the mind loses its grip on a writer when he is writing and his heart takes the control. Hence, Hampl says that heart is the boss when writing. Hampl is right when she says that heart is the boss of writing. I have experienced that when I am writing about my life, I tend to be more open, unburdened and relaxed about my experiences and descriptions. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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