Reading Analysis To Kill A Mockingbird Year 9 Reading Analysis

844 words - 4 pages

How does Harper Lee use language and structure to build tension and create a sense of fear in her description of the “the tyre incident” ?
Harper Lee uses many elements of language and structure to build tension and create a sense of fear in her description of “the tyre incident” which is told in chronological order from a first person singular viewpoint. For instance, at the beginning of the text she uses long sentences: “I could only hope that Jem would outrun the tyre and me, or that I would be stopped by a bump on the sidewalk.” This long sentence and punctuation reflects the way the tyre is rolling, it is never ending and ongoing, Harper Lee wants the reader to feel the speed of the tyre through the punctuation and fast rhythm of the sentences by using commas. Harper Lee also uses many action verbs of which Scout isn’t the subject: “The tyre bumped on gravel, skeetered across the street...” This shows that the tyre is making the action and the children can’t change anything about what is happening, they are losing control. The loss of control is also expressed through phrases such as : “I couldn’t put out my hands to stop. I could only hope that..” Scout is helpless, she can’t save herself, this builds the tension of Jem and Scout not knowing how to solve the problem and not being able to do anything about it. The metaphor “Ground, sky and houses melted into a mad palette” mimics how Scout can’t see clearly because of the speed and helps build the tension while using the senses, in this case sight, to make the reader feel like he is in the tyre with Scout and is feeling the same way she is.
Harper Lee uses alliteration to make the reader hear the sound the tyre is making through her text by using a repetition of the letters “p” , “b” and “d”which creates an onomatopoeia: “bumped, crashed, skeetered, popped”. Once again this makes the description more powerful with the use of senses. Then, she uses the simile “popped me like a cork on the pavement ” because a cork pops out with pressure which creates an imagery summing up all the elements listed above: Scout is represented as an object, she undergoes the actions made by the tyre because she is losing control over the situation and when she is “popped out”, the...

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