The Following is an Account of What Happened

Plot, space, and the art of shadowing

Authored by: Jean-François Duclos

The Routledge Handbook of Literature and Space

Print publication date:  January  2017
Online publication date:  January  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138816350
eBook ISBN: 9781315745978
Adobe ISBN:


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On the surface, the aim of a shadowing scene in works of fiction is to reconcile two psychological drives: the inquisitiveness of the person who follows and the discretion of the one who is followed. If all goes according to plan, then the former will learn about the latter in a way that is plainly meaningful to the narrative. However, any disruption occurring during the event is likely to create a sense of discontinuity, similar to that of loss, that can affect both the plot and, within the telling of the plot, the organization of space. 1 Indeed, scenes of shadowing rarely follow simple narrative and geographical patterns.

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