full title · Kidnapped
author · Robert Louis Stevenson
type of work · Novel
genre · Adventure
language · English (Scots)
time and place written · Scotland, U.K.
date of first publication · 1886
publisher · Cassell
narrator · David Balfour (1st person narration)
climax · The climax occurs when the friendship between David and Alan reaches its greatest point of crisis, and is resolved by David's near-death fainting spell.
protagonist(s) · David Balfour
antagonist · Ebenezer Balfour
setting (time) · 1751
setting (place) · Scotland
point of view · First person narration
falling action · David tricks his uncle Ebenezer, defeating him, and finally comes into his inheritance.
tense · Immediate past; that is, real-time narration
foreshadowing · None
tone · Kidnapped is primarily an adventure novel. It maintains a breathless pace, full of movement and action, as David and Alan flee across Scotland.
themes · Loyalty and friendship; honor; diversity of ethics
motifs · Jacobites vs. Whigs; Highland life vs. Lowland life; inheritance; fleeing
symbols · Alan's silver button; the ship Covenant; Alan's illness after the visit with Cluny Macpherson
"To them, vengeance is a code of ethics that is acceptable."
This seems all wrong to me!
Stevenson takes a very sympathetic approach with the Highlanders. He wants us to LIKE them. He would not have considered vengeance an acceptable code of ethics, so he would not have meant for us to view the Highlanders as a vengeful people. There is something missing in this Sparknotes interpretation.
Considering the historical context, we know the Highlanders considered the English Whigs to be USURPERS. Therefore, they did not v... Read more→
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