Анализ текста The Happy Man из учебника Аракина за 3 курс
The novel under analysis is entitled “The Happy Man”. It is written by Somerset Maugham.
The main character is the narrator. There is no any information about his appearance in the text. The only one thing about his age is the information that he was a young man when he advised well. Nevertheless we can judge about his character from his thoughts, behavior and speech. The description of his character is indirect. He is a wise man: he knows that it is impossible to know another persons as well as oneself to give him/her advice which would be good for him/her. And he is bold enough for a man who dares to give the life changing advice to a man he see for the first time.
The text is expressive and emotional because it describes the feelings of the man who has been forced to point the finger of other man’s fate. The author uses different stylistic devices for this purpose.
The events took place in London and Seville, Spain. The settings where the actions took place are the following: a modest apartment and an ordinary Spanish house with a patio. We don’t know at what period of history the actions took place, but we know the time length of the narrated events and the amount of time during they occurred: many years later, fifteen at least.
This novel runs about a desperate man who confided his life to a total stranger. The theme of the novel: a man’s search for happiness; the role of advice in the life of people.
We can divide the novel into three logical parts in order to understand it better.
It is a narrative text. The key in the first part is rather pessimistic, and sometimes we can say that it is rather negative. This could be proved if we look at the metaphors the author use: he compares every man to “a prisoner in a solitary tower”, life to “a difficult business”. Another metaphor is used when he says that “some people flounder at the journey’s start”. So we see that the author tries to make us ready for the future accidents, and to show us the difference between the past “wrapped in the dark cloud of Destiny” and the future.
The second part was written in the form of a dialogue between the patient and our hero. We can see the despair of a stranger, because he uses “short, sharp sentences”, to emphasize it the author told us that they had “a forcible ring”. The visitor seems to be very tired of life, he is passive, but he wants to change something in it, that is why to show us the antagonistic character of the visitor, the author uses an oxymoron “bright dark eyes”.
The third part is lyrical, and a bit romantic. In the third part, our main character comes to Seville, and tries to find that stranger. He lived in an ordinary Spanish house, his room was littered with papers, books, medical appliances and lumber but he was really happy. It could be seen from his description: a dissipated, though antirely sympathetic appearance, and of course from his murmuring “Life is full of compensations”.
The story tells us about different events, which followed one another: I heard a ring bell at the door; I led him into my sitting room; achieved this feat; he reached out for his hat; he left me; many years later; I happened to be in Seville, etc.
The text is a descriptive one; there are many descriptive signals: a modest apartment, a total stranger, an apologetic laugh, a cursory glance, a little man, a wonderful life, trifling indisposition, a squeamish patient, a dim recollection, a Spanish woman and others. Descriptive words make the text expressive and vivid.
The author employs many contextual synonyms, which make the language expressive: dangerous, hazardous; unwillingly, forced; confused, embarrassed; a total stranger, a perfect stranger; alter, change; twinkled, shone.
By this story, the author shows us that our life is full of compensations. Taking the risk, you lose something but also you can find something, which could be really important for you.