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We Were the Mulvaneys Joyce Carol Oates

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1 We Were the Mulvaneys Joyce Carol Oates
Group 7 Hannah, Becca, Tharun We Were the Mulvaneys Joyce Carol Oates “To endure is the first thing that a child ought to learn, and that which he will have the most need to know“ -Rousseau

2 Theme Statement In We Were the Mulvaneys, by Joyce Carol Oates, the author uses an inductive reflection on death to characterize the boy with a sense of maturity by embracing the ideas that should scare him.

3 Literary Devices Sentence Structure Tone Point of View Imagery
Sentence Style Induction

4 Sentence Structure Complex sentence
“The brook was flowing below left to right (east to west, though at a slant) and I stood immobile leaning on the railing (pretty damn rotted: I’d tell Dad it needed to be replaced with new planks, we could do it together) until it began to happen as it always does the water gets slower and slower and you’re the one who begins to move” (8-15) Children or childhood is usually thought of as simple, but here, through complex and personal sentences, we are shown that Judd has complex, mature thoughts.

5 Sentence Structure Cont.
Periodic Sentence “And I, just a skinny kid, the runt of the litter at High Point Farm, would have to pretend not to know what I knew,” (Line 65). Judd’s mental maturity and contemplativeness as he considers every end, including death.

6 Tone A happy and lighthearted tone is presented: “Mike rolled down his window to lean out and pretend to cuff at my head- ‘Hey Ranger-kid: what’s up?’,” (Line 50). Changes to a darker tone, “Them, too. All of them. Every heartbeat is past and gone,” (Line 59). The change in tone from the happy and uplifting encounter with Judd’s father and brother to the dark tone regarding death characterize Judd as a contemplative yet mature boy

7 Point of View Throughout the excerpt, the author uses the first person point of view in order to make Judd more real and personal. It also gives us an idea of his thoughts, which helps us understand him better as a character.

8 Imagery “But it’s a fact when dry yellow leaves… don’t fall from a tree the tree is partly dead.” (Lines 27-28) “light gritty film of snow on the ground, darkest in the crevices where you’d expect shadow so it was like a film negative” (Lines 28-30)

9 Sentence Style Italics
“ONEtwothree ONEtwothree! thinking Every hearbeat is past and gone! Every heartbeat is past and gone!” (Lines 20-22) “Every heatbeat is past and gone! Every heartbeat is past and gone! in a trance that was like a trance of fury, raging hurt Am I going to die? because I did not believe that Judd Mulvaney could die.” (Lines 31-34) shows his deepest thoughts on death and his mature understanding of it despite his age Sense of curiosity in something he should be afraid of Judd doesn’t ignore death, rather he embraces it and though his understanding might make him upset, he is bettered by it

10 Induction In the beginning of the piece, he focuses mostly on himself-his thoughts and feelings. It slowly broadens out from himself to his family, and finally to society in general. This shows how his childhood and development is affected by death and results in his scary maturity.

11 How we relate Watching the news when you get older broadens your view of death in relation to society

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