Narrator and point of view


The short story “The Boarding House” by James Joyce is a third-person narration, combining multiple points of view. The narrator is outside the action, yet he has access to some of the characters thoughts and perspectives on the events.

He begins the story using Mrs Mooney’s perspective:

She was sure she would win. To begin with she had all the weight of social opinion on her side: she was an outraged mother. She had allowed him to live beneath her roof, assuming that he was a man of honour and he had simply abused her hospitality.

But he also knows Polly’s perspective on the events: “Polly knew that she was being watched, but still her mother's persistent silence could not be misunderstood.”; “She waited on patiently, almost cheerfully, without alarm, her memories gradually giving place to hopes and visions of the future. Her hopes and visions were so intricate...”

The third point of view u...

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