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“An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge ” Questions

  1. In Part 1, Bierce includes few details about the condemned man and does not reveal the reason why he is being hanged. How does this help create suspense?

This helps create suspense because the reader has no clue what he did, and he may have not done anything that bad, so they really start to wonder what he has done.

  1. In what ways are the condemned man’s perceptions of time and motion distorted as he is waiting to be hanged? Why are his distorted perceptions important?

The man has a flashback to when he is with his wife and children.  They are important because they show you what his life has been like before he was on the bridge.

  1. What seems to be the narrator’s attitude toward Farquhar in Part II? What is the narrator’s attitude toward war?

The narrator’s attitude is that he will to anything to help out with the war.  He feels that the war should be going on, and he is supporting it.

  1. Considering the outcome of the story, what is ironic or surprising about Farquhar’s longing for the “larger life of a soldier?” What is ironic about the fact that Farquhar agrees with the saying that “all is fair in love and war?”

It is ironic because in the flashback, he helps put a soldier in need of water.  This is ironic because all was not fair in love and war in the story.

  1. What details in Part III suggests that Farquhar’s journey occurs in his mind? How is the journey connected with the plan of escape that occurs to him moments before he is hanged?

It suggests it because he is with his wife and kids on his journey, but in reality he is on a bridge getting hung.  It is connected because in the journey, he did escape, but that was in his mind.

  1. Explain whether you think the portrayal of Farquhar’s final thoughts and sensations is realistic.

Yes, because the only thing that he wanted to do right then was to go home, and say good-bye to his wife, and hug her.

  1. Point of view refers to the vantage point from which the story is told.  Why is the limited third-person point of view appropriate for this story? How might the story be different if Bierce had used an omniscient third-person narrator?

It is because you can see the story from the narrator who is telling the story like he is watching the whole thing. It would be different because it would seem like he wasn’t there watching the whole thing.

  1. How does Bierce’s use of flashback contribute to the effectiveness of the story?

It did because it shows some emotion to his personality and shows that he really doesn’t want to be there.

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English_2 Walter Villaume Period 5
Mr. Cecil