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Analysis of Literary Techniques in Child’s Play by Monique Proulx

Updated on March 30, 2014

Theme :

In this story Child’s Play, Monique Proulx is arguing that many young ladies are embracing prostitution as part of their daily life. Sexuality and prostitution appears to be a dominant theme in this story. The author also indicates that though prostitutes get a substantial amount of money at times, many of them get to misuse them as they live lavishly and squander the money. Among the topics that are therefore discussed here include prostitution, life in prostitution and the consequences therein. In essence, Proulx tries to explain how a young lady has immersed herself in prostitution, the kind of life she leads and the consequences of such a life. His thesis is therefore Prostituion is an odd kind of life which does not pay.

Literary Techniques employed by Proulx

Among the literary techniques employed by Monique Proulx in this story is the use of figurative language. For instance, she uses an hyperbole when she says that the driver’s body collapsed when they were with Marie. She uses that language to indicate the status which the driver was while having sex with this lady.

Onomatopoeia is another literary aspect, which the author uses in this story in describing a situation, sound, object or action. She uses these words in giving sound or presenting a scenario in the written work. For instance, the narrator says that while the driver is enjoying the work, Marie is annoyed because the water is going glubglug, meaning that the water that was passing underneath them was going at a faster speed. Further, the author is using onomatopoeia to bring live to the story. Among such words in this story include to thumb out, the bag is wedged, and the rumbling of the stomach. She also says that the driver has turned red, in real life situation, no person can turn red literary. This expression is used by the author to explain how the driver has dramatically changed due to the sexual lust with this prostitute.

Similes are also not left behind by Monique Proulx in this work. The work of simile is to establish a similarity between one element or object with another. In this perspective Marie’s bag is equated with a shapeless beast when the narrator is saying that « her bag is wedged between her ankles like a shapeless beast”. The driver, one of the casual lover’s of Marie is also described as having Ronald Reagan’s ravaged eyes. We all know that no one can have another person’s eyes or any part of the body and the author is using this expression to indicate how the driver’s eyes looked or seemed to look like.

Humor is also not left behind in this story. The author has used some of its aspects in making the story lively to the audience. In this story, humor is also used to establish a mental image on some specific scenario. For instance, instead of saying that the weather is warm, she uses another humorous term, “muggy” to depict it. She also says that the trees in Parc Lafontaine are edged purple during dusk time.

Owing to how the story is arranged, it seems that the author has also employed a framing technique in showing the beginning and end of the story. The author uses various events such as the strawling of Marie and her encounter with the driver, the ensuing conversation and eventual sexual act in the car and also a depiction of Marie in her house.


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