How Does Anne Fadiman Use Informal Voice In Night Owl

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The purpose of this paper will be to to summarize Anne Fadiman’s use of familiar, formal, and narrative voices in her essay “Night Owl.” The analysis will primarily focus on understanding Fadiman’s choice of using an informal voice over taking a formal approach. The different components such as figurative speech will also be considered. In Anne Fadiman’s “Night Owl,” she attempts to break the traditional association of nighttime with evil and negativity by pointing out connections with positive accomplishments in fields such as science and literature. She compares the key differences between herself, a person who is active and wakeful at night, to a morning person, her husband. Fadiman uses a combination of primarily familiar and narrative voices in her essay to engage her audiences through personal digression and figurative speech. Through Fadiman’s “Night Owl,” it is evident that telling stories and being informal can break the barrier between the writer and …show more content…

By using figurative speech, Fadiman naturally conforms to using an active voice. She begins her essay with the use of an imagery; she writes: My husband and I sleep in a white wooden bed whose head posts are surmounted by two birds, carved and painted by an artist friend… On George’s side there is a meadowlark, brown of back, yellow of breast, with black pectoral V as trig and sporty as the neck of a tennis sweater. On my side there is a snowy owl, more muted in coloration, its feathers a frowzy tessellation of white and black. (Fadiman par. 1) This use of imagery instantly creates a visual representation of ideas in the reader’s mind. Throughout the essay, the use of symbolism is apparent with references to night owls as insomniacs and larks as those who are early risers. The heavy use of figurative speech enables her to create vivid images in the reader’s mind and the essay becomes much more

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