The story by Katherine Manfield entitled "Sixpence" tells us about the every day situation when parents are educating their children by means of physical punishment. The question which is raised by the author definitely is "Should children be whipped?"
The text starts from the general introduction using a statement of general truths, which in a result may be called the question of the whole text.
"Why should a small boy like Dicky, good as gold as rule, sensitive, affectionate, obedient, and marvelously sensible for his age, have moods, when, without the slightest warning he suddenly went mad dog, as his sisters called it, and there was no doing anything with him?"
After that goes body of the text where the action takes place:
1) Dicky's mother presses her husband to whip Dicky
2) The act of punishment
3) The feel of remorse
The text finished with a rhetoric question: "But could even that - could even a whole sixpence - blot out what had been?".
The author leaves the reader with unanswered question. It makes us to go over the story in our minds again and then get more from it.
The story is a third person narration. The author is an omniscient narrator as he often represents inner speech of the character, which usually is even more important to the reader because helps to understand the character more effectively, rather than the character might say in a dialogue.
Example of father's represented inner speech:
"My God what a life!"
"Good God! What had he done?"
"Horray, that is what you've come to!"
The vocabulary of the text is stylistically very bright. There are a lot of dialogues in the text that is why the characters use slangy, swearing words, (e.g. "Coward! Fool! Brute!", "Good God!") fill-in...