Realism In Bret Harte's The Outcasts Of Poker Flat

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Realism is literature that represents actual life, the author Bret Harte tries to stay as close to the truth as possible when writing. Authors like him write truthfully and objectively about ordinary characters and their ordinary situations. In Harte’s “The Outcasts of Poker Flat” he represents realism through archetypes and local colour. The short story is set in 1850 in a California mining town during the Gold Rush. It’s about a group of outcasts getting kicked out of town and banished never to return, Harte provides a realistic depiction of the Old West through these events the characters experience. Bret Harte’s literature represents realism because he was part of the movement. He is especially famous for his portrayal of the Old West because he actually lived in California during the time of the Gold Rush. He wrote about people he was actually familiar with which is …show more content…

Allusion is reference to a well-known person, place, event, literary work or piece of art; it’s used to help clarify and emphasise certain ideas. For example, “He now proposed to narrate the principal incidents of that poem… And so for the rest of that night the Homeric demigods again walked the earth”. The Iliad is a heroic poem originally written by Homer around 8th century BC, it’s the story of the Trojan war and the weakness of Achilles' heel. This was used among the group of characters to pass the time and take their minds off the lack of food and weather conditions. Even though, the Iliad was just a story to them, it was used by Harte to emphasise the idea of a weakness, causing a sense of foreshadowing for the reader. For instance, it could be foreshadowing some of the changes that the characters undergo throughout the story. These changes were mainly caused by vulnerable points like getting kicked out of town, getting stranded in snowy weather on a mountain and watching their food supply

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