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The effect of foreshadowing in Emile Zola's Therese Raquin - Essay Example

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The novel Therese Raquin, published in 1867, depicts unhappy marriage and life grievances of the main character Thrse. Zola unveils the moral values and perception of human life and shows readers that crime brings its own punishment. In a twofold manner the reconstruction or exhumation has a deep bearing also on the moral drama embodied in the outward action…
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The effect of foreshadowing in Emile Zolas Therese Raquin
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Download file to see previous pages Thesis the effect of foreshadowing helps Zola to prepare readers to plot twists and conflict of the story.
The blending of past and present in Therese Raquin helps Zola to foreshadow a story conflict and appeal to emotions of readers through vivid narration and imagination. The focus throughout is on the present. It is not the expiation of crime, let alone the perpetration of it years ago, it is her marital malaise that is at issue, and the discovery of the crime serves to transform vague malaise into acute crisis. Therese Raquin, however, tackles the hindrances of freedom in the modern world more directly and more precisely. In that novel, they take the form of a hypocritical society and false values. Zola describes "She had seen Therese at work, and wished to give her to her son as a guardian angel. This marriage was a solution to the matter, foreseen and settled in her mind" (Zola 1999). This passage foreshadows further events and unveils hardship faced by the main character. Again, the past to the present is driven in by the incident when Therese and her lover drown Camille. Therese is irresponsible and frivolous, not only because the serious elements in her nature have never received encouragement, but also because she has inherited from her father a disposition towards frivolity and irresponsibility. Zola invokes childish memories as formative elements in the characters of his heroes, who, moreover, have a great deal in common with their respective mothers.
Zola uses foreshadowing as the main tool to predict and predetermine the future. In the novel, the family and the little town in which they live is hardly a question on which the home-trudging multitude exercised its imaginative powers, unless it was in the cynical and rhetorical form. Zola projects the dramatic as well as the moral interest--into the future with vigor and effect. There are cynical prophecies, there are sentimental prophecies, fantastic prophecies of all kinds. Minds straying that way should remind themselves that, if the end of the novel is to be taken seriously, then clearly the greatest battle of Therese's life has already been decided and that nothing thereafter is likely to deter her from doing what she is determined to do: and that is to think out, in independence and solitude, her position in a world whose general laws she has begun to apprehend and means to fathom. Zola depicts the illness of Madame Raquin: "Paralysis was little by little gaining on Madame Raquin, and they foresaw the day when she would be riveted to her armchair, feeble and doltish" (Zola 1999). The main benefit of this technique is that it leaves readers in suspense additional emotional tension and anxiety. In Therese Raquin, the relevant matter preceding the actual action is not so involved, but, as the title might indicate, it has a profounder significance. The character and activities of a man have to be reconstructed to account for the mentality. However skilful and, in Zola's scheme, indispensable the telescoping of a long action might be, it struck contemporaries as novel and for that reason gave rise to doubts.
One of the unique symbols which foreshadow death is a portrait. In the bridal chamber hangs portrait of Camille made by Laurent. The deep meaning of this scene is underlined by the fact that beneath it the couple feared of horror at their crime, reproach one ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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