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What is the point of view in the short story "The Interlopers"?

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student1313 | Student, College Freshman | eNotes Newbie

Posted October 12, 2009 at 3:33 AM via web

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What is the point of view in the short story "The Interlopers"?

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clane | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted December 5, 2008 at 3:29 AM (Answer #1)

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The narrator of "The Interlopers" is the omniscient narrator. This type of narrator is a kind of mind reader, it is the all-knowing narrator. The narrator is not a character in the story and almost never refers to himself directly. The omniscient narrator is able to tell the reader everything, including how each character thinks and feels.

Just because the omniscient narrator knows all does not necessarily mean that this narrator will let you in all the information to be had in a story. Sometimes this narrator will save an important piece of information until the very last lines of a story, much like this one. Our omniscient narrator had a bird's eye view of what was happening with Ulrich and Georg, but did not tell us about the wolves until the last sentence of the story.

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scarletpimpernel | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted October 12, 2009 at 3:35 AM (Answer #1)

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Saki uses 3rd person omniscient point of view for his story "The Interlopers." Evidence of this point of view appears in the narrator's knowledge of the two characters'--Georg Znaeym and Ulrich von Gradwitz--actions and thoughts. He begins by giving the reader the background to the long-standing feud, and later when the two enemies meet in the disputed forest, the narrator states that

"each had hate in his heart and murder uppermost in his mind."

Near the story's end, the narrator also tells readers that Ulrich is relieved and exasperated. While these emotions would show on one's face, the narrator clarifies the source ofUlrich's exasperation--that he is trapped when his opportunity to annihilate his enemy is so close. Again,Saki lets readers know the motive behind the character'sactions and gestures.

If the story were told in first person, readers would see the use of pronouns such as "I," "me," "we," etc. If Saki used 3rd person limited, readers would not know what the two men are thinking.

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