The Ambassadors - Narrative Technique,Tone, International Theme

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Narrative technique The Ambassador is a novel of intelligence. Henry James's technique is not telling every details of the story but looking at everything through the eyes of the Strether.

Throughout the story, Strether's consciousness is like a play. James simply treated the scene as dramatically as possible by keeping it framed in Strether's vision but keeping his consciousness out of sight, his thought unexploded. At the first place, the story is told by Strether's point of view. The change in his purpose is due to a change in his vision and the long slow process could not be followed unless his vision was shared by the readers.

Tone Without a doubt, "the Ambassador", the great novel by Henry James, has ironic tone. According to the story, some situations especially at the end, things occurred differently from our expectation. These following events are to show the irony of the novel.

a) Strether changes his mind to be on Madame de Vionnet's side. He is attracted to her and even though his mission from Mrs. Newsome is to bring back Chadwick to Woollet, he asks him to stay in Paris longer. He betrays Mrs. Newsome on his mission as an ambassador.

b) The relationship between Chadwick and Madame de Vionnet which Strether did not know until he saw them together on the river.

c) Strether decides not to marry Maria at the end of the story even though she is a very nice person and most of all she loves him.

The International Scene and Theme Henry James is best known as the author of stories dealing with the "˜international scene', the transatlantic intercourse of American and European society and culture. It is true that he used that phenomenon, as it appeared during the second half of the nineteenth...