Raymond Carver

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Raymond Carver was a blue collar worker turned poet turned writer in the early 1970s. He wrote about what he knew. His stories were about ordinary people going through difficult times. He wrote in a minimalist style about the blue collar life. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines minimalism as “a style or technique (as in music, literature, or design) that is characterized by extreme sparseness and simplicity.” Raymond Carver’s short story Little Things is an example of the use of minimalism through his concise use of words and omission of details. I agree with Jonathan Yardley when he states, “His prose is spare, terse, devoid of showy effects, stripped clean of all but the most inescapable adjectives adverbs; his subject is the daily life…show more content…
Another interpretation could be that the dark on the inside could be the inside of the hearts of the couple. As the argument increases so does the darkness. Mr. Carver uses few words to make a powerful statement. The statement “it was getting dark on the inside too” is really left to the reader’s interpretation. In a few words Raymond Carver once again paints a powerful scene as the woman and man start to fight over the baby. One can feel the tension build as the baby is quiet in the beginning and by stanza number 26 the baby is “red- faced and screaming.” The reader immediately feels for the innocent child caught in the conflict spiraling out of control. The couple starts out fairly civil. The dialog between the man and woman is short and to the point. With the exception of the first two times the woman speaks to the man and once later by the man each utterance is only three to five words long. In the short discourse the reader can feel the stress building. The man wants to hurt the woman first emotionally then physically. Near the end of the story the argument turns physical. In stanza…show more content…
Carver decides to leave out is what started the argument. The details of how the argument started were left out. The read has to use his imagination and experiences to conclude for himself how the argument started. Again, this story could be about anyone or everyone. Most of the time arguments start out as simple discussions then one of the people involved have their feelings hurt and lash out at the other person involved. Perhaps the most obvious and crucial detail left out is the ending of the story. The last sentence “In this manner, the issue was decided” the reader was left to their own devices to imagine the outcome of the struggle. This short seven word sentence has a powerful impact on the reader. The reader has to determine the end of the story. Did the baby die? Did the baby live and was just hurt? Did the woman or the man give up? These answers are left for the reader to draw his own conclusion based whether a person is an optimist or a pessimist. As an optimistic person I would like to think that the baby is fine and one of the people involved came to their senses and gave in. A more pessimistic person might read this story and think the baby died or was hurt. Everything in this story was simple: the wording, the details, and the length.
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