Essay, 6 pages (1400 words)

The analysis of "the irish stew” by j.jerome essay

Jerome Klapka Jerome was an English novelist and humorist. His books are loved by readers even nowadays, though Jerome’s contemporaries didn’t give high praise of his works and some literature critics thought that his novels and romances didn’t concern serious and actual problems of life being a little bit senselessness. But these suggestions were erroneous. On the contrary we can see his attitude to modern English reality and how he discloses absurdity of well-established norms of behavior, morals and manners.

Jerome is best known for the humorous travelogue “ Three Men in a Boat”. The novel narrates about three fellows George, Harris, Jerome, who discuss their problems with health of which they suffer so much. So they take a decision to have a rest of the city life. As the result comrades decide on boating holiday up the river Thames to Oxford during which they will camp. The theme of the extract is unpracticality of people against the nature. And the idea is to show how helpless modern man is when he is face to face with nature.

As for the extract given in the book we can divide it into three logical parts. The first one is called “ Sweet Sonning”. In this part the author describes a beautiful town in which the main characters put up for the night. The narrator tells us about his impressions of Sonning, he says it is the most fairy-like nook on the whole river. The second part called “ Irish Stew”, which falls into four subparts: “ Peeling potatoes”, “ Scraping Potatoes”, “ Other Ingredients”, “ Montmorency’s contribution”.

The first subpart consists of narration how these fellows try a good, slap-up supper. For everyone in this company it seems a fascinating idea. So George gathers wood and makes a fire while Harris and Jerome try to peel potatoes. After long and harassing attempts they have to admit that peeling potatoes is very undertaking, both of them try to do their best but it is really hard. Besides George criticizes their work. The second subpart is about scraping potatoes. There we can see find out that these comrades suggest it would be easier to scrape, but they are wrong.

After five-and-twenty minutes of scraping they come to the conclusion that it’s really hard to do this too. Jerome admits that he could never have seen such a thing as potato-scraping for making a fellow in a mess. George gets at them adding that it is absurd to have only four potatoes in an Irish stew. In the third subpart which is called “ Other Ingredients” Harris, George and Jerome think that four potatoes isn’t enough, so that is the reason of putting other ingredients into the stew.

We can’t but mention that George put washed half a dozen or some more potatoes in without peeling. Then he stirred it all up, adds cabbage and about half a peck of peas, all the odds and ends and the remnants, a pork pie and a bit of cold boiled bacon, half a tin of potted salmon and couple of eggs. And moreover he says it’s the advantage of Irish stew. In the forth subpart “ Montmorency’s contribute” their dog with a dead-water rat in his mouth wishes to present as his contribution to the dinner. Without a second thought Harris adds it to the stew.

As for the third and the last part called “ A Great Success” we see that the main characters taste the dish they have cooked. They say it is a great success, there is something so fresh and piquant about it and though it may be too rich for weak stomach, it is very nutritious. The story underdiscussion presents a piece of narration interwoven of direct speech and it is narrated if the first person. The action takes place in Sonning, an amazing village with breathtaking views. The prevalent mood of the story is rather emotional, ironical and sometimes even satirical.

Speaking about the main heroes first of all we should pay attention to George. It is a nice fellow who is shown as one who gets accustomed to command. George is an image of the eccentric character, who is absolutely unpractical to life and always finds himself in various comic situations. It is known that George goes sleep at a bank from ten to four each day, except Sundays, when they wake him up and put him outside at two. The author uses different stylistic devises to communicate to reader his image and a comic situation happened to him as exact as he can.

Actions of George seem to be really silly because he tries to present himself as an expert in this sphere, we can understand by his yearning to make a dinner, for example he wants to show his friends what could be done up the river in the way of cooking. And soon in the end of the extract reader can see the result of his attempts to do an Irish stew. Harry plays there a role of such kind of a man who is a chap and simpleton. We can see the funny side of the situation when he is ready to add a dead-water rat into the stew.

He is a nice fellow and takes everything easy despite of George’s big words about the precedent. Special attention should be also paid to the narrator Jerome. It’s a usual thing the presence of the narrator in Jerome’s works of art. Here the narrator Jerome plays an important role, it means that he steadily observes everything that happens and notices all the nonsense of life, and moreover he comments on this or that situation speaking ironically of it. For example the situation with the dead-water rat, he thinks over if it is such kind of sarcasm or a real desire to make a contribution to the dinner.

The purpose of the narrator is not the fighting with man’s vices, it is a desire to show things as they are not in satiric way but with the help of the ironic comment on it and mocking remarks about the divergence of character’s expectancies and real opportunities of their realization. Exactly this ironic commentary expresses the author’s vision and attitude to life. It has a common sense and a known part of scepsis, which helps to see different things and phenomena in its true light, not disclosing the people faults but presenting them as they are.

The presence of such character as Montmorency has a great meaning too. Due to this image Jerome creates a comic situation and attaches some ease to it. We can’t but mention that there is an enormous quantity of stylist devices which help reader to imagine it in his mind. Firstly author often uses a lot of epithets, for example: fairy-like nook, veritable picture, sweet Sonning, awkward stairs, winding passages, low quaint rooms, latticed windows, splendid opportunity, extraordinary shape, sarcastic spirit, thoughtful air and so on.

They make the extract more expressive and vivid, add emotional coloring to images. Hyperbola is used there to increase the impression on a reader. We can find it in such word combinations as “ for scraping ourselves” or “ I don’t think I enjoyed this meal more”, “ it was a great success” and “ like nothing else on the earth” to show how proud of themselves George, Jerome and Harris are. Such stylistic device as contrast is also used in the story to add some awkwardness.

For example the quality of potato and a period of time to peel potatoes, also Harris who doesn’t understand anything at all follows George’s advice, offers to put a dead water-rat in the stew. Besides such word combination as “ village politics” sounds rather strange and funny. Speaking about the irony there are many examples of it too: “ a good slap-up supper”, “ village politics”, “ with “ odds and ends”, “ with economy and care” “ his contribution to dinner”, and all the ingredients of the stew, which are incompatible. So we can make a conclusion that the characters are busily doing nothing.

As for the metaphor it helps to create a more vivid image of the story: “ every house is smothered in roses”, “ they were bursting in clouds of dainty splendour”, “ a potato about the size of pea-nut”. Repetitions are also used in this extract: odds and ends, potatoes, peel, scrape, wasting, dead water-rat. So after analyzing all these devices and reading this extract a reader has a clear picture of fellows’ desperate attempts to prove themselves that they aren’t so helpless when they face the nature. Jerome shows all the characters in full measure and the story leaves only pleasant impression.

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