The Significance of Behrman, a Min Character f the Plot of “The Last Leaf”毕业论文_英语毕业论文

The Significance of Behrman, a Min Character f the Plot of “The Last Leaf”毕业论文

2021-04-07更新

摘 要

最后一片叶是欧亨利写作生涯中最有名的短篇小说之一,作品主要讲述了老艺术家贝尔曼,如何通过自己的画去拯救一位患病的小女孩。本研究拟探讨小说中开始被塑造为配角的贝尔曼对小说情节的重要性。通过考察小说塑造贝尔曼的相关细节,小说中各个人物的关系,本论文拟分析小说如何构架了一个出人意料的结局,同时这个结局又如何通过小说前文的铺垫虽出人意料却又在情理之中。

关键词:贝尔曼; 配角; 情节;出人意料的结局

Contents

1.Introduction…………………………………………………………………………………………………..1

2.Demonstration……………………………………………………………………………………………….2

2.1Presentation of Behrman’ disposition………………………………………………………………2

2.1.1Belittling description………………………………………………………………………………….2

2.1.2Speciality of Behrman’ s dialogues………………………………………………………………3

2.2Relationship of characters……………………………………………………………………………..4

2.2.1Relationship among characters…………………………………………………………………….4

2.2.2Main characters and a minor character…………… …………………………………………5

2.3Foreshadowing……………………………………………………………………………………….5

2.3.1An Uncreated masterpiece……… ………………………………………………………………….6

2.3.2 A Blank wall and canvas……………………………………………………………………………7

2.3.3A mastiff for young artists…………………………………………………………………………..7

3.Conclusion…………………………………………………………………………………………………….8

The Significance of Behrman, a Minor Character, for the Plot of “The Last Leaf”

  1. Introduction

William Sydney Porter (September 11, 1862-June 5, 1910), known by his pen name O. Henry, was an American writer. O. Henry’s short stories are known for their wit, wordplay, and surprise endings. People call him the creator of the short story. He had never wanted to be a writer until marrying his wife. Novels such as “The Gift of Magi” “The Crop and the Anthem” and “The Last Leaf” are masterpieces of O Henry.

“The Last Leaf” is one of the most popular short stories that O Henry has written. This short story mainly described an old painter, Behrman, who has created nothing in his career, helped a young artist to overcome the illness by painting a leaf on the wall. The time he finished the leaf, he died peacefully. This old painter sacrificed himself to save the young female artist and the leaf he drew on the wall was his masterpiece.

“The Last Leaf” is an outstanding short story among his novels. Studies on this novel are huge in number and early in time. However most of the researches focus on symbolic meanings of the leaf or the theme that the author wanted to express. In studies on the plot of the “The Last Leaf”, scholars concentrate on the theme, the narrative structure, especially the surprise ending. However, the significance of Behrman for the plot has not been paid adequate critical attention, which would be the focus of this paper.

This paper attempts to explore the significance Behrman, characterized as a minor character at the beginning of the story, for the plot of “The Last Leaf.” The first and second parts would analyze how a surprise ending is plotted by examining, respectively, details concerning Behrman’s characterization, and relationship among characters in the story. The third part would explore how the ending is made a surprise but with credibility by examining foreshadowing devices used in the story.

2.Demonstration

Behrman plays an important role in this short story. However, in terms of the structure of the novel, the author never mentioned Behrman in the first half of this story. In the second part of the story, the author described Behrman in a numerous words presenting Behrman’s chatting and living environment. Behrman appears as a minor character at the begging of the short story. However, as the structure evolves from the beginning to climax and then ending, his significance for the plot becomes increasingly obvious.

2.1Presentation of Behrman’ disposition

Characters and plot are regarded as the most important among all the elements of fictional writing. And they are closely related to each other.

This description is deceptively simply because the actions are performed by particular characters in a work and are the means by which they exhibit their moral and disposition qualities, plot and character are therefore interdependent critical concepts. (M.H.Abrams, 224)

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