Settings and Places

why places matter in English Literature

Places matter because authors generally take into careful consideration where their novels take place. The reason why is because settings inform the reader of important ideas. Sometimes, a place affects characters in an observable way. Other times, a setting has a history that connects to an idea significant for readers.

So the first step is to think of the places the story happens in. How do these environments affect the story or characters? What is their role in the progression of the story? What are the specific places characters do things in or what are the general places characters go to (for example, farms, forests, hospitals, hotels, etc).

Ex. The novel’s characters repetitively discuss important topics in restaurants. The use of restaurants as set-pieces for significant dialogue could mean…

Ex. There are many forests as the main setting in multiple scenes of the novel. the deliberate choice of this setting is to tell the reader...

Ex. The haunted house of this novel is used as a setting to explore ideas about loss and trauma. It is able to explore these ideas by doing...


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