Denis Johnson s stories are not for everyone, but if you enjoy literature you can appreciate the sodalities of this writings. His style of writing is not completely original but aspects of it express their individuality. Basically all of his work deals with the bleak under tones of society, especially in the collection of progressive short stories in Jesus Son. In Jesus Son one of the short stories is titledDundun.
In this short Johnson does an exceptional job of conveying personalities of the characters to you as soon as you begin reading. And the way that he expresses their personalities sets the tone for the rest of the story. It s difficult to explain Johnson s’writing to someone who has never read one of his stories, but to give an example… When the narrator in Dundun (who s name you never learn, only the nick-name Fuckhead) first talks to the reader he says how he is hoping to get some opium from Dundun, but hew as out of luck. This intentionally gives the reader a low image of the narrator. Its doubtful that if it was intended for the reader to look up to the narrator that the first thing Johnson would mention is that he s a drug addict.
After the narrator tells you about his drug use he goes on to describe how Dundun looked as he greeted him, from there on out the desensitized nature of all of the characters in the novel begins to show. McInnes isn t feeling too good today. I just shot him. You mean you killed him I didn t mean to. Is he really dead No. He s sitting down.
Bartelby The Scrivener By Melville Essay, ResearchBartelby The Scrivener By Melville All literary works are written from a specific standpoint. This standpoint originates from the mind of the author. The author, when creating his literary work, has a specific diagram / plan and vision of what the story is supposed to convey. However, not all readers will interpret the literary work in the way that ...
If you look at the punctuation in this conversation between the narrator and Dundun you notice that there are no exclamation marks at all! If you were to read it as the author wrote it you would sound as if you had a so what attitude towards learning that a person you know had been shot by one of your friends. Throughout the entire story there are details such as that. You don t notice them all the first time you read it but they add up t give you a sense of the detachment that these men feel in their lives. As you read further into thestory the rest of the characters don t care about McInnes any more than Dundun or the narrator. Johnson expresses this a little more directly with the other men in the story. Aren t you taking him to the hospital or anything Good idea, Beatle said sarcastically.
It seems as if Johnson is trying to create an image of the other men in thestory, which is worse than the image he created of the narrator. This is so that he can make the narrator the most likable character in the story while still keeping the first image of a do nothing drug addict. As the story progresses Johnson seems to try to raise your opinion of the main character (who is also the narrator) while attempting to keep the fact that he is a drug addict (and not that nice of a guy) present in your mind. Despite the narrators apparent lack of care he is the only one who attempts to help McInnes, still, after he decides to take McInnes to the hospital in his car he asks Dundun if he has any opium left, and when Dundun says that he used it all his response was You shouldn t have used it all up… I told him angrily. This is telling the reader almost sub consciously that He may be helping McInnes now that he is here, but…
don t forget that the only reason he came over was to get some drugs. Without a doubt Johnson likes to play around withthe images and personalities that his main characters portray. Immediately after he reminds you that the narrator should not be liked, even though he is the only one of themen who expresses concern for McInnes, Johnson puts a guilt trip on the reader by making you feel sorry for the narrator. But I was happy about this chance to be of use. I wanted to be the one who saw it through and got McInnes to the doctor without a wreck. People would talk about it, and I hoped I would beliked.
The story, "IN DAFF" uses the feminist strategy because it is the approach to literature that seeks to correct or supplement what may be regarded as a predominately male-dominated critical perspective with a feminist consciousness. Feminist theories also attempt to understand representation from a women's point of view. The narrator is in search for her own identity. The narrator is unsure about ...
From this point out Johnson really doesn t do anything else to influence your view of the character until the end of the story, when, as they are driving to the doctor and McInnes dies in the car. He s dead. All right. I know he s dead. Throw him out of the car. Damn right throw him out of the car, I said.
I m not taking him anywhere now… I m glad he s dead, I told Dundun. He s the one who started everyone calling me Fuckhead. Dundun said, Don t let it get you down. After all of the setup to make you wonder if the narrator perhaps is capable of being the least bit decent he shoots your opinion of him into the gutter by (on top of other things) showing you that the only reason he was helping McInnes was so that he might beliked by other people and it may have changed the disliked image he had made for himself.
A lot of Johnson s work is a bit to dark for some people and the content can get old after a while. Still regardless of whether you like the story or not you have to appreciate the details that Johnson puts into his stories and amazing job he does of conveying the emotions and mentalities of the characters.