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Время и место действия (Setting)

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Размышляя о времени и месте действия, задайте себе вопрос: важны ли они для понимания произведения или история могла произойти в любую эпоху в любой стране (сравните «Золушку», «Ромео и Джульетту», «Преступление и наказание»)? Важно также задуматься о функции деталей, на которые автор делает акцент (пейзаж, обстановка комнаты, звуки, цвета, погода): они могут служить созданию реалистичной атмосферы, создавать у читателя определенное настроение или быть средством непрямой характеристики персонажей.

Следующие фразы могут быть полезны при разборе:

The story (extract) under discussion / under consideration / under review in question was written by… (comes from the book …by…).

The scene is laid / set in (a small town in the South England).

The novel is set in the South during the racial turbulent 1930’s, when blacks were treated unfairly by the courts.

The time of action is (the fifties of the 20th century).

 

Нужно иметь в виду, что время и место действия могут быть важны в разной степени. Так, в следующем примере более значимо место действия. Выполняя анализ отрывка из романа ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’, необходимо собрать все детали и имена собственные, доказывающие, что речь идет о Нью-Йорке. При этом важно прокомментировать, какое значение они имеют для характеристики персонажей, создания атмосферы, для проблематики произведения.

Историческое время довольно расплывчато: главный герой книги «Завтрак у Тиффани» вспоминает, как он впервые приехал в Нью-Йорк в начале войны, в то же время роман вышел в 1958, а известный фильм снят в 1961 и скорее отражает атмосферу 1960-х, а не 40-х, парадоксальным образом напоминающую и о 1920-х, показанных Фитцджеральдом в «Великом Гэтсби». Однако в тексте подчеркнуто время года, что необходимо учесть при анализе.

Breakfast at Tiffany’sby Truman Capote

Outside, the rain had stopped, there was only a mist of it in the air, so I turned the corner and walked along the street where the brownstone stands. It is a street with trees that in the summer makes cool patterns on the pavement; but now the leaves were yellowed and mostly down, and the rain had made them slippery, they skidded underfoot. The brownstone is midway in the block, next to a church where a blue tower-clock tolls the hours. It has been sleeked up since my day; a smart black door has replaced the old frosted glass, and gray elegant shutters frame the windows. No one I remember still lives there except Madame Sapphia Spanella, a husky coloratura who every afternoon went roll-skating in Central Park. I know she’s still there because I went up the steps and looked at the mailboxes. It was one of these mailboxes that had first made me aware of Holly Golightly.

I’d been living in the house about a week when I noticed that the mailbox belonging to Apt. 2 had a name-slot fitted with a curious card. Printed, rather Cartier-formal, it read: Miss Holiday Golightly; and, underneath, in the corner, Traveling. It nagged me like a tune: Miss Holiday Golightly, Traveling.

One night, it was long past twelve, I woke up at the sound of Mr. Yunoshi calling down the stairs. Since he lived on the top floor, his voice fell through the whole house, exasperated and stern. “Miss Golightly! I must protest!”

The voice that came back, welling up from the bottom of the stairs, was silly-young and self-amused. “Oh, darling, I am sorry. I lost the goddamn key.”

“You cannot go on ringing my bell. You must please, please have yourself a key made.”

“But I lose them all.”

“I work, I have to sleep,” Mr. Younoshi shouted. “But always you are ringing my bell…”

“Oh, don’t be angry, you dear little man: I won’t do it again. And if you promise not to be angry” – her voice was coming nearer, she was climbing the stairs – “I might let you take those pictures we mentioned.”

By now I’d left my bed and opened the door an inch. I could hear Mr. Yunoshi’s silence: hear, because it was accompanied by an audible change of breath.

“When?” he said.

The girl laughed. “Sometime,” she answered, slurring the word.

“Any time,” he said, and closed his door.

I went out into the hall and leaned over the banister, just enough to see without being seen. She was still on the stairs, now she reached the landing, and the ragbag colors of her boy’s hair, tawny streaks, strands of albino-blond and yellow, caught the hall light. It was a warm evening, nearly summer, and she wore a slim cool black dress, black sandals, a pearl choker. For all her chic thinness, she had an almost breakfast-cereal air of health, a soap and lemon cleanness, a rough pink darkening in the cheek. Her mouth was large, her nose upturned. A pair of dark glasses blotted out her eyes. It was a face beyond childhood, yet this side of belonging to a woman. I thought her anywhere between sixteen and thirty; as it turned out, she was shy two months of her nineteenth birthday.

She was not alone. There was a man following behind her. The way his plum hand clutched at her hip seemed somehow improper; not morally, aesthetically. He was short and vast, sun-lamped and pomaded, a man in a buttressed pin-stripe suit with a red carnation withering in the lapel. When they reached her door she rummaged her purse in search of a key, and took no notice of the fact that his thick lips were nuzzling the nape of her neck. At last, though, finding the key and opening her door, she turned to him cordially: “Bless you, darling – you were sweet to see me home.”

“Hey, baby!” he said, for the door was closing in his face.

“Yes, Harry?”

“Harry was the other guy. I’m Sid. Sid Arbuck. You like me.”

“I worship you, Mr. Arbuck. But good night, Mr. Arbuck.”

Mr. Arbuck stared with disbelief as the door shut firmly.

“Hey, baby, let me in, baby. You like me, baby. I’m a liked guy. Didn’t I pick up the check, five people, your friends, I never seen them before? Don’t that give me the right you should like me? You like me, baby.”

He tapped on the door gently, then louder; finally he took several steps back, his body hunched and lowering, as though he meant to charge it, crash it down. Instead, he plunged down the stairs, slamming a fist against the wall. Just as he reached the bottom, the door of the girl’s apartment opened and she poked out her head.

“Oh, Mr. Arbuck…”

He turned back, a smile of relief oiling his face: she’d only been teasing.

“The next time a girl wants a little powder-room change,” she called, not teasing at all, “take my advice, darling: don’t give her twenty-cents!”

 

NOTES:

Cartier-formal –красивым строгим шрифтом.

ragbag colors of her boy’s hair– пестрота ее волос в мальчишеской стрижке.

pearl choker –жемчужное ожерелье под самую шею.

she had an almost breakfast-cereal air of health –от нее веяло здоровьем, она выглядела как на плакате, рекламирующем полуфабрикат каши на завтрак.

she was shy two months of her nineteenth birthday –ей не хватало двух месяцев до девятнадцати лет.

sun-lamped –загорелый от света кварцевой лампы.

buttressed pin-stripe suit –костюм в полосочку с подложенными плечами, грудью и т.п.

powder-room change– мелочь, чтобы расплатиться в туалете.

 

 


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