What is a short analysis of the story Death in the Woods?

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literaturenerd eNotes educator| Certified Educator

To begin, one must understand what an analysis is. An analysis is the detailed examination of the style, structure, or elements of something. In regards to literature, an analysis examines a text in regards to its structure or the elements used within the text.

Therefore, an analysis of Death in the Woods could be completed in two distinctly different ways.

1. Analysis of Style

The story's style is one which has raised the awareness of readers based upon the point-of-view used in the text. The narration is told in first-person in a way which details the remembrance of an old woman based upon the recollections of the narrator, a man, who retells the story based solely upon his own limited knowledge and gossip. The story provides the narrator with a "sense of completion" based upon his ability to complete the story of the old woman. By completing the old woman's story, the narrator has found that he is able to become invested in her life in a way he was not able to based upon his own (initially) limited knowledge about her.

2. Analysis of Structure

The structure of the story provides both the reader and the narrator a sense of closure. The narrator's inability to articulate the old woman's story, initially, proves disheartening for him. Through the structure of the story, both the narrator and the reader are allowed to follow the tale of the old woman's life. The retelling of the old woman's story, through the narrator,allows the woman's life to become realistic (regardless of fact). Therefore, the structure of the story proves to be one which readers can follow chronologically based upon the initial discontent the narrator has through the completion, and satisfaction with the completion, of the old woman's life.

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Death in the Woods

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