Table of contents

Style of writing

The language in the short story “Early Autumn” by Langston Hughes is neutral. The vocabulary is simple and the sentences are usually short and easy to follow. This is in line with modernist writing, where the significance of a story is more important than its style.

Dialogue is heavily present in the story. Bill and Mary meet after years apart and, at first glance, their exchange is typical of two people who have not seen each other in a long time and are now catching up:

‘I live in New York now,’ she said.

‘Oh’ — smiling politely, then a little frown came quickly between his eyes.

‘Always wondered what happened to you, Bill.’

‘I’m a lawyer. Nice firm, way downtown.’

‘Married yet?’

‘Sure. Two kids.’

‘Oh,’ she said.

The short, fragmented sentences mirror natural sp...

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