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  • Publicado : 24 de enero de 2011
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Language is the communication’s tool that the human being has developed throughout the history. In this development each language has acquired several distinctive traits, but almost all of them share some characteristics, such as different registers and styles, depending on the situation or context where they are used. Since the first literary works, language has hadspecial connotations and characteristics in these. In this essay I will pay special attention to them, explaining how language is moulded in a literary work, and how its special nuances and differences respect to the common and everyday one make it as rich and colourful, but usually hard to understand. In addition, we must notice how language is organized, what types of rhetorical figures are therein a certain work and how the story is being narrated; this last point basically means the kind of narrator. Apart from that, it is necessary to explain how language interacts between the writer and the reader, the transmitter and the recipient. This is one of the main points in the literary criticism, yet one work cannot be completely understood without one of them. Although it seems otherwise,we readers play an essential role in literature.


“The Literary language is an act of conscious creation; the transmitter must necessarily have a wish of originality. Literary language must be unprecedented, strange and always original.” [1] Although sometimes it is difficult to trace the boundary between normal and common language and literary language, thelatter voluntary departs from the first one, in order to make it beautiful and attract reader’s attention, not only by the content but also by the form. This special use of language implies that who uses it must have a distinctive and unique type of interpretation; this means that each writer has his or her own way of looking and describing the world. In the excerpt “The Emigrants,” the language usedis extremely rich in descriptions and images, what entails an abundance of adjectives, adverbs and words that emphasize what is being described.

1) Nowadays, when usually one is quite dreadfully crammed in together with one’s fellow passengers, and aggravated by the unwanted attentions of the cabin crew, I am frequently beset with a scarcely containable fear of flying; (…)This particular literature’s trait is one of the main points in the differentiation from daily language already cited. It is obvious then that, literary language, and literature in general, have a strong aesthetic purpose like every type of art, rather than a practical purpose. In the excerpt I am working with, for example, the author is not trying to give us advice about changing country or aboutflying. The writer is trying to express the deepest feelings and sensations the character is suffering from, although we know that this work has some autobiographical traits.

As I have said, when we are reading a literary work, we have to pay special attention to the form, yet literature is art made by words.

In this excerpt in particular, we can also find some interestingfigures such as images, which support the point made before.

2) With a grinding roar, its wings trembling, the aircraft toiled downwards until we passed by the strangely ribbed flank of a long, bare mountain ridge seemingly close enough to touch, and appearing to me to be rising and sinking like a giant recumbent body, heaving as it breathed. (…)

This image clearly supports mypoint. Nobody speaking in daily language will use a similar register or style to describe how the plain passed through a mountain ridge. We can say that literary language tries to make us readers experience feelings and sensations through the special use of words.


First of all, when a description of the narrator’s type in a literary work is needed, we must start...
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