– What the writer focuses your attention on at the beginning
– How and why the writer changes this focus as the extract develops
– Any other structural features that interest you
In the extract of Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad, the writer structured the text to interest readers.
Firstly, the writer interests readers by putting the focus on the sceneries at the outset of the extract. This is shown when the writer illustrates the things around the river — the “rioted vegetation”, the “thick and sluggish air” and sunshine. With the focus on the sceneries, the writer gives the reader a clear idea of what kind of special environment the extract takes place in. Therefore, the writer interests readers by putting the focus on the sceneries at the outset of the extract.
Secondly, the writer changes the focus in the extract. This can be shown when the writer starts to describe the main character, Marlow’s thoughts and feelings when he was steering: “There were moments when one’s past came back to one, as it will sometimes when you have not a moment to spare for yourself…” This makes the text more interesting, as the readers would not only know about the sceneries but also about what kind of person Marlow is through his inner feelings. Thus, the writer changes the focus in the extract to interest the readers.
Thirdly, the writer slows down the pace at the end of the extract to interest the readers. There are lots of information closely packed at the beginning of the second paragraph, such as descriptions of the natives, of the station on the bank, and of the features of the trees. Everything happens at a fast speed. On the contrary, when it comes to the end of the second paragraph, the pace slows down. This gives the feeling as if the boat went deep into the forest, resulting in creating a mysterious atmosphere that interests the readers. For this reason, the writer slows down the pace at the end of the extract.
As a conclusion, the writer uses structure techniques on the text to make it more interesting to the readers.