The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County cover image

The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County

by Mark Twain
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Why does Twain have Wheeler, rather than the narrator, relay the story of Jim Smiley in "Jumping Frog"?

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Twain wants to put the reader into the shoes of the narrator, to get us to imagine that we are there in this remote Western tavern, listening to this shaggy-dog story. And because that story is so ridiculous, so utterly absurd, it can't really be told by the narrator. An unreliable narrator's one thing; but a narrator who can't be taken at all seriously is quite another.

Also, in using the narrator as a framing device, Twain is giving the reader a glimpse into a completely different world. The West has long exerted an irresistible fascination on the American imagination, and Twain seeks...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 305 words.)

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