What is the point of view of Stig Dagerman's "The Surprise?"

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literaturenerd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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The point of view of Stig Dagerman's "The Surprise" can be confusing. The second sentence of the text contains the pronoun "we." This pronoun usage would force one to assume that the point of view is first person (other first person pronouns being I, us, me). In a first person narrative (or point of view), the narrator is the main character who is telling his or her own story. The third sentence of the story begins as follows: "When Ake's mother had been a widow for five years." This would tend to support that the point of view is that of third person omniscient.

The second sentence, containing the pronoun "we," acts as the narrator's attempt to draw the reader into the story. By using the pronoun "we," the narrator is inviting the reader to take part in the narrative aspect of the tale. In this sense, the unseen narrator is telling the story as a witness to it, not a part of it.

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