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Literature Analysis

There are many things which contribute to understanding of the literary work. They also influence the feelings and reaction a person gets after finishing reading. There is a special “single effect” theory which states that any written work has to create a specific effect on a reader, causing particular emotions and mood. A great example of a single effect can be seen with Susannah Anderson’s story The Legend of La Llorona. The story creates a single effect, making the readers feel anxious by carefully choosing the plot, writing style, and other details; hence, the readers get a feeling of constant tension and worries which haunt them from the beginning of the story until its end.

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Before analysis of the work, one would like to expand a little bit more on a single effect. It is something that was introduced by Edgar Allan Poe. The famous writer believed that every story had to achieve unity and produce one strong emotion which would be passed on to the readers. Hence, Poe thought that there should be a particular emotion caused by the story, and it was the author’s job to write in such a way as to make the story influence its readers in a certain way. One believes that such an effect is very interesting to analyze because every story is special, and authors achieve unity in various ways. Nevertheless, the greatest achievement is when readers feel a certain emotion without the author trying too hard because that gives a work a sense of ease.

When it comes to The Legend of La Llorona, the author has achieved a single effect perfectly. From the beginning and until the end of the work, readers get a feeling of anxiety. Although the author begins her story with explanation and description of happy times and beautiful people, the feeling that something bad ought to happen does notleave the readers. On the contrary, it only grows stronger, leading to extreme tension and doubts. Readers understand that the beginning just foreshadows horrible consequences that will come in the conclusion. Basically, the entire plot contributes greatly to creating anxious atmosphere the readers get to experience.

One would also like to praise the author’s style for accomplishing a single effect. Anderson writes as if it was a fairy tale - a very dark and mysterious unreal story. She states that the events she describes took place very long time ago; such a long time, in fact, that anything was possible then. With this choice, she gives a story a new sounding because readers begin to think of it as a real legend passed on from generation to generation. They forget that it is a work written by a modern author and begin to think of it as a myth which has a long history. That is why they start to think of this work in relation to many legends and stories they know. They begin to think of history and the past, and that makes them anxious about the story’s plot and its further development.

Hence, Anderson’s style of sounding like a real legend contributed greatly to the single effect. The same applies to the point of view which creates an almighty author who knows everything in advance, but does not hurry to share this knowledge with the readers. This author pretends like there are things she does not know about, for example, when there is no clear explanation why the prince left his wife. This author gives many explanations that could be possible without stating for sure which one was right; but the readers get a sense that the author knows everything and deliberately chooses not to share this information. Readers become anxious about both author’s and prince’s reasons, and that makes them more eager to read the storyy further.

Anderson used plot successfully in order to create a single effect. She created a story in style of myths and fairy tales, but she added darkness to it. With this mystery, she was able to grab readers’ attention in the very beginning, and with anxiety her work created, she was able to keep the readers interested until the end of the work and even later on. They wanted to finish the work badly in order to free themselves from the doubts, but the sad conclusion only made them think of this work more. Characterization and setting also played important roles for single effect. Setting which introduced readers to a place which was bordering between truth and fiction and could look anything they wanted as long as they imagined allowed the author to manipulate readers’ creativity and produce something very unique in their minds. Thanks to careful characterization of characters as being very one-dimensional, but mysterious at the same time, readers focused more on the setting than on the heroes. They imagined a dark place where a betrayed wife met her husband, and they associated that place with a feeling of anxiety. In their minds, the canals and the overall darkness during the night were the main reasons for anxiety, causing people feel miserable.

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Hence, one can say that The Legend of La Llorona is an interesting story that makes readers anxious about the plot and its conclusion. They follow the story with great interest only to find out the true reason for their anxiety in the end. One can say that the author achieved a single effect successfully because she chose her words carefully, described her characters in an effective way and wrote her story similar in style to fairy tales which made readers more anxious about the work thinking of it as a real ancient legend written during times when anything was possible.

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