The Curious Incident Speech Essay

Submitted By adam980110
Words: 669
Pages: 3

Within a post-modern context, contemporary composers exploit narratives in order to compel responders to question notions of truth. This is evident in Mark Haddon's novel The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time in which, as the extract suggests, the highly unique protagonist challenges the responder's perception of truth. Haddon employs potent techniques, such as multiplicity of text types in order to shape meaning, effectively aligning the responder with Christopher's perspective, which is defined by Asperger's syndrome. Therefore, the novel foregrounds the voice of a group marginalised by society allowing the responder to shift from stereotypical perceptions of truth, and empathise with those on the peripheries.
Truth is a construct of the individual and is innately a product of their context. The extract conveys Christopher's unique nature and his unique perceptions of truth. Haddon challenges the reader's perception of truth through foregrounding of the point of view of a child with Asperger's. Meta-fictional intrusions are used to connote Christopher[s highly distinctive understanding of truth through "metaphors are lies", which conveys his inability to comprehend other individual's notion of truth. "I think that people believe in heaven because they don't like the idea of dying." The uniqueness of Christopher is foreshadowed in the extract through "Pretend that I am the only person in the world." Haddon conveys this in order to align the responder with Christopher in order to contrast perceptions of truth. Haddon further contrasts the way in which we value the truth through exploration of the way in which Christopher subverts his logic in order to misconstrue the truth. "It is a white lie" this challenges the way in which the responder values the truth by highlighting the inherent human need to twist the truth. Thus through presenting the highly unique protagonist as the extract suggests, Haddon contrasts the responder's existing understanding of truth.
Narration is a powerful tool in shaping the way we respond to the text. The extract exhibits Christopher as the narrator of the novel "My name is Christopher". Through this first person narration, Haddon further introduces us to the theme of truth through the relationships they develop with Christopher. As we can empathise with his condition. Haddon presents Christopher as an unreliable narrator so as to withhold details and conform the reader to Christopher's version of the truth. "I thought hard about the letter, I could not work it out."
This creates a point of contention between our own perceptions of truth and Cristopher's thereby contrasting and challenging the responder's perception. The emphatic relationship that narration develops allows the responder to view the world through Christopher's eyes