full title · Anne of Green Gables
author · Lucy Maud Montgomery
type of work · Novel
genre · Coming-of-age novel; juvenile literature
language · English
time and place written · 1908; Canada
date of first publication · 1908
publisher · L. C. Page
narrator · The narrator relates the events of the novel in the third person and has access to every character’s thoughts and emotions. Biased and partial, the narrator often mocks, condemns, or shows affection for the characters.
tone · The narrator is affectionate toward Anne, satirical when describing small-town life, and sentimental and gushing when describing nature.
tense · Past
setting (time) · The turn of the twentieth century
setting (place) · Prince Edward Island, Canada
protagonist · Anne Shirley
major conflict · Anne struggles to reconcile her imagination and romantic notions with the rigid expectations of traditional Avonlea society.
rising action · Anne’s continuous mistakes in her domestic duties and social interactions
climax · Matthew’s death and Anne’s success at college
falling action · Anne’s decision to stay at Green Gables and teach in Avonlea
themes · The conflict between imagination and expectation; sentimentality versus emotion
motifs · Fashion; images of nature
symbols · Anne’s red hair; the light from Diana’s window
foreshadowing · Anne’s dream about having a best friend hints at the close relationship she develops with Diana Barry; Matthew’s heart trouble foreshadows his death at the end of the novel, just as Marilla’s headaches foreshadow her health problems.
This is perhaps minor, but contrary to the character description, Rachel Lynde is not childless. In fact, she and her husband had 12 children, although 2 died in infancy. Her children are grown and out of the house, but they certainly existed. Rachel Lynde is bossy, opinionated, and oftentimes intrusive, but her opinions were born out of a wealth of experience, and thus often on point (e.g. Anne's puffed sleeve dress), even if her manner of speaking them was exasperating or unwelcome.
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