2.      There
were quiet some differences between the two narrators portrayed in “The
Notorious Jumping Frog of Calaveras County” and “The Real Thing’. I noticed
that each narrator had different reasons as to why they choose to engage in
dialect with other characters presented in the text. The narrator in “The
Notorious Jumping Frog of Calaveras County” was not too keen on getting
information from the very chatty Simon Wheeler. I perceived the narrator had no
interest in long stories that had no use to him, perhaps because he was only
doing this for a friend. When referring to Simon Wheeler’s response about the
inquiry of Jim Smiley, he stated, “he would go to work and bore me to death
with some exasperating reminiscence of him as long and as tedious as it should
be useless to me” (Twain 121). Unlike Mark Twain’s narrator, Henry James’
narrator in “The Real Thing” was very engage in conversation with other characters
mentioned in the text. He stated, “I was so amused by them that, to get more of
it, I did my best to take their point of view.” (James 462).  Both stories begin with first person point of
view, which allowed the reader to connect more with the authors, taking that it
was written from their perspective. Although Mark Twain begin “The Notorious
Jumping Frog of Calaveras County” in first person point of view, he switched to
a third person point of view when Simon Wheeler began to tell the story of Jim
Smiley. In “The Real Thing”, Henry James managed to stick to a first-person
point of view throughout the entirety of the story. Both authors expressed
themselves through the thoughts and lives of their first-person characters.
Coming from a first-person point of view, allowed the stories to be more relatable
to reality, hence the term Realism.

 

1.      The
educational aspect portrayed in this text “The Notorious Jumping Frog”, was
made very clear. Mark Twain brilliantly allowed the readers to see a difference
between Easterners and Westerners through educated and uneducated diction. The
narrator’s tone and choice of words used at the beginning of the text, revealed
to me that he has academia background.  The narrator stated, “I called on good
natured, garrulous old Simon Wheeler…”
(Twain 121). When using the word garrulous, when in terms simply means chatty,
right away this led me to think the narrator’s vocabulary was extensive. The
narrator also carried a certain persona about himself, a persona of patience
and self-control, being that he sat and listened to the very chatty Simon Wheeler’s
without interrupting. He stated, “I let him go on in his own way, and never
interrupted him once” (Twain 122). Unlike the narrator, Simon Wheeler’s dialect
and description of Jim Smiley was not so much formal. He used westernized slang
words such as ‘feller’ and ‘thish-er’ when telling the story of Jimmy Smiley to
the narrator (Twain 123). Although not specifically stated, Smiley seemed to
have come from a background where survival by any means possible was the motto
for life. Any means possible, meaning doing bizarre things that to another
would seem classless. Mark Twain depicted Smiley as a man simply trying to make
best out of life. It was perceived that formal education was not prevalent in
his surroundings and street hustling was the way of life, perhaps passed on
from previous generations. Overall, Twain was able to show the readers a
distinct difference between Easternized and Westernized education.

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