The book “lives of girls and women” by Alice Munro is about Del, a young girl in rural Canada. It is more of an autobiography though not factual. The book chronicles Del’s growing up in a rural canadanian town called Ontario and the setting is of the year 1940s. The other book is “roughing it in the bush” by Susanna Moodie. This book accounts for her emigration to a farm in Ontario from England. It is enriched with local customs, character sketches and tales and/or travel narratives.
Susanna Moodie vividly paints out her voyage from England to pre confederation Canada. The reader is able to meet with each character that Moodie encountered an also get to know what she thought about each one of the characters and hence the reader gets to know them well. The physical details that forms a readers first impression is given for example Brian the still hunter who had hawk like eyes, another good example is tom who is always absent minded characterized by wishing a person goodnight during the day and more specifically at noon and lastly Mr. Malcolm who wear an animal expression during meal times. She has also allowed other character to tell the reader about characters that she accounts for; a neighbor tells a colloquial story of Brian’s attempted suicide and the treats he used to save his life.
Moodie effectively gives each character a role that reflects her sensibilities and also prejudices. After introducing a character Moodie also comments briefly on the character and also make her thought about the character introduced known to the reader who is better situated to make predictions about how she is going to react to the character. “I had taken him for a mechanic, from his dirty, slovenly appearance; and his physiognomy was so unpleasant that I did not credit his assumption that he was a friend of my husband, for I was certain that no man who possessed such a forbidding aspect could be regarded by Moodie as a friend." (Moodie, 2009) such comments make the reader for see the interaction between Moodie and Mr. Malcolm.
Munro also uses Del to account for life in Ontario (jubilee), born in a family of a single atheist mother and father who is a famer she narrates a journey of her life through time from a small girl to a woman. This tells is a better reflection of being a child of parent who is black listed because of being an atheist. She also thinks about it as an adult woman. The whole idea about religion in the perspective of a child and that of an adult proves to be very intriguing. The readers occupy the space as he or she tries to answer the questions about God that runs through Del as a young girl and her struggle to comprehend the whole idea about God. Del accounts for her encounter with sex, death and birth and in the novel Del without bias explores the bright and dark sides of being a woman (Munro, 1996).
Both books talks of life in a rural town, Ontario and they all are autobiographies of girls who grow up be women but munro’s story are more of a collection of short stories that each episode start in a new chapter and end at the end of the chapter though the characters are the same for the whole book. Susanna’s work is a typical novel that accounts for her life growing up in a rural town. Del just like her atheist mother believes that change is coming for women.
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