Literature, Language, and Life

Home » Uncategorized » Interior Monologue -Rasha O.

Interior Monologue -Rasha O.

Lodge states that interior monologue for the reader is similar “wearing earphones plugged into someone’s brain, and monitoring an endless tape-recording of the subject’s impressions, reflections, questions, memories and fantasies, as they are triggered either by physical sensations or the association of ideas.”

Although unclear at first, these features are seen within the writing of Duong Thu Huong’s Paradise of the Blind. Subject impression can be seen in Hang’s ending monologue of chapter 4. Hang gives a description of her impression of the environment she was arriving at and the reader can easily deduce that her description was clouded by Hang’s own perspective at looking at the house. This monologue gives evidence as to how the house haunting her thought was a sensation that triggered memories of the past that is “linked, inextricably, by the ties of blood and race.” The old house triggered a specific memory for Hang that the author used as a means to end the interior monologue.

Questions were used in the interior monologue to show how Hang, at the time, was still a child and didn’t understand everything that happens around her. This gives the reader the idea that the author is a narrator that keeps the character’s own position in mind. For instance, when Hang meets Aunt Tam and is confused as to how she could mean so much to other people. This shows that Hang isn’t fully aware to the extent of the significance of blood ties and family relationships in the Vietnamese culture because she is still young.

The reader can see memories and fantasies were used in the interior monologue of Chapter 11 that show the hidden desires of Aunt Tam. After the funeral, Hang finds the chest that held Aunt Tam’s dreams of a happily ever after wedding. This monologue doesn’t just give us insight on Hang, but also on Aunt Tam, allowing a deeper understanding of her character.

The final key feature necessary for any interior monologue is reflection. In the final chapter, Hang looks up and watches the sky. She compares her life span to that of a comet, both of which disappear into nothing. Thoughts of a comet triggers her to reflect on her life and past. She becomes aware of how “hell’s money” destroys lives and she wants to move on and live her life. The monologue ends with Hang’s fantasy of a university auditorium and a plane which leads the readers to assume that Hang plans on leaving to university with nothing holding her back.


2 Comments

  1. ramanajib says:

    Loved how do pinpointed the details as well as had extremely useful explanations of the examples! Great job!

  2. Jude says:

    What a great post! The first time I heard of interior monologue I immediately thought of the main character (Hang) talking to herself for a long period of time. However, now I realize that interior monologue is much more complex than just talking out loud with no one around. Interior monologue includes the deeper thoughts of the character and everything that goes on in their mind at the time from “impressions, reflections, questions, memories and fantasies”. This can be seen many times throughout the entire book as the narrator is Hang, and all of the stories and descriptions she is telling relates back to the present and/or past scenes that include her memories and reflections. I think this post can relate a lot to my chapter for Lodge on “Showing and Telling” because the author has Hang using interior monologue most of the time to “show” what is happening in the novel using description and dialogue that could be found based on where she currently is in the novel, or her past memories and reflections that she recalls.

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