This statement sums up the majority of the essay without going into too much detail. This essay attempt to use two different books about vaguely similar topics; ‘The Plague” and “Beloved” to explore why chronological order is the best method of conveying a story or an idea. Beloved does not follow chronological order therefore this makes it a lot harder for the reader to understand the story and the chain of events that occur in the book. Limited attention span of an average person is a great reason why literature should be direct and simple.
Each book takes a very different approach into presenting the story. The book ‘beloved’ uses a story telling approach where there are multiple timelines that are going on at the same time, each from a very different time period. While ‘ The Plague’ follows a chronological order giving the reader information as the story goes progresses. It is commonly accepted that Tony Morrison used the chosen method to present the story to show the fractured state of mind that many of the African-Americans of that generation were feeling as a result of their new found freedom after generations of being used ant treated like animals. This makes the story significantly harder to comprehend than ‘The Plague’ and requires the reader to read the book multiple times before the book can be fully understood in depth. Overall, I prefer the presentation method of ‘The Plague’ as the message that the author is trying to present is a lot easier to understand because of the method of presentation.
Beloved does not follow chronological order; this makes the story significantly harder to understand. The use of flashbacks and multiple timelines that are running in between each other makes the book a lot more complex and harder to understand than if the book was to be presented in the chronological order. The complex chain of events that take place in the book is not fully revealed until the end of the book. Although this technique was used by Tony Morrison to present the fractured state of mind that many of the slaves were in at that time, this was because of all the confusion that they faced at that time. However, if the story is presented in the chronological order, it will lead to the reader getting a better image of the concurrent events that are occurring in the book as they read it rather than find out after they have finished the book. The previous statement embodies what the majority of the paragraph is trying to imply. The Plague however, uses chronological order and therefore allows the person to understand the story as they go and be able to understand what is going on as they read rather than reading after they have finished.
Chronological order was invented to allow people to store and manage data and events more efficiently. For example, people would normally list the order of people and items from the first to the last and not skip around; this is basically what book beloved is doing. By placing events in chronological order it allows the person to understand the motives behind each event as many of the actions that have been taken to cause these events may have been because something had made the character react in the way that he did. However by not placing the events in chronological order, it will not allow the reader to have an insight into the details that might have cause the character in the book to take the actions that he took. The format of presentation makes it impossible to get a sense of what is going on until the end of the book.
People’s limited span of attention explains why it is essential for an piece of literature to be direct and forward. The average person’s attention span is no longer than 20 minutes and if people aren’t captivated or interested in the book after spending the 20 minutes reading it, people are unlikely to finish the book or even continue reading the book. This would mean that the message that the author is trying to convey would not be passed on to the reader, even if it is very meaningful. By using chronological order, the person will able to understand the course of events better and be able to understand the chain of events and therefore the book better.
By making the story complex, the author is preventing the majority of the people without better knowledge to read and understand the book. This would prevent the message, no how good it is from reaching the average person and therefore would fail. In the book ‘ beloved’ the author is trying to convey the message of suffering that many of the original African-Americans suffered to both the current black population and the descents of their Caucasian owners. However, the high school graduation rates in America are at 70.1% as of 2008, this would mean that the at least 29.9% of teenagers that are 18 would not be able to understand the book. This is a shame considering that the message that the book is trying to convey is such a meaningful one that everyone should be able to understand when reading a book with such a beautiful meaning and storyline.
Chronological order is the most direct and convincing way to convey a message. This is because of human nature and the limited attention span, making a direct method the most effective method of getting the message across to the reader. A majority of the readers want novels that would allow them to relax after a hard day of work and not be made to think deeply and try to connect all the information together. Therefore the author makes it harder from himself to pass his message across to the reader which is his intended audience.