time and place written · 1950–1953, Los Angeles, California
date of first publication · 1953 (a shorter version entitled “The Fireman” published 1951 in Galaxy Science Fiction)
publisher · Ballantine Books
narrator · Third-person, limited omniscient. Follows Montag’s point of view, often articulating his interior monologues
climax · Montag’s murder of Beatty
protagonist · Montag
antagonist · Beatty, but also society in general
setting (time) · Sometime in the twenty-first century; there have been two atomic wars since 1990
setting (place) · In and around an unspecified city
point of view · Montag’s
falling action · Montag’s trip out of the city into the country
tense · Past, with occasional transitions into present tense during Montag’s interior monologues and stream-of-consciousness passages
tone · Foreboding and menacing, disoriented, poetic, bitterly satirical
themes · Censorship, knowledge versus ignorance
motifs · Paradoxes, animals and nature, religion, television and radio
symbols · Fire, blood, the Electric-Eyed Snake, the hearth, the salamander, the phoenix, the sieve and the sand, Denham’s Dentifrice, the dandelion, mirrors
full title · Lolita
author · Vladimir Nabokov
type of work · Novel
genre · Postmodern novel; tragicomedy
language · English
time and place written · 1949–1955, New York
date of first publication · 1955
publisher · Olympia Press, Paris
narrator · Humbert Humbert narrates the novel from his prison cell, approximately five years after the events he describes. The foreword to the novel is narrated by John Ray, Jr., Ph.D. in 1955, three years after the deaths of Humbert and Lolita.
point of view · Humbert narrates his account of his affair with Lolita Haze in the first person, focusing only on his own thoughts and emotions.
tone · Darkly comic; sly; intellectual; alternating between bemused weariness and sweeping romanticism
tense · Humbert Humbert describes the majority of the events in the past tense, but he frames his account with passages of present tense narration.
setting (time) · 1947–1952
setting (place) · Initially the South of France and unnamed locations in Europe, then all over the United States
protagonist · Humbert Humbert
major conflict · The primary conflicts in the novel are between Humbert Humbert and society, which disapproves of both incest and pedophilia, and between Humbert Humbert and Clare Quilty, who competes with Humbert for Lolita’s affections.
rising action · Humbert takes Lolita on the road, in an effort to control her behavior and cement his possession of her. By traveling, he hopes to hide his and Lolita’s identities—and relationship—thereby avoiding society’s disapproval and eluding his rival, Clare Quilty.
climax · Humbert’s plan fails when Lolita escapes him, running off with Clare Quilty after a brief stay in the hospital.
falling action · Humbert spends the next several years trailing Lolita and attempting to exact his revenge on Quilty.
themes · The power of language; the dispiriting incompatibility of European and American cultures; the inadequacy of psychiatry; the alienation caused by exile
motifs · Butterflies; doubles; games
symbols · The theater; prison
Full title The Centaur
Author: John Updike
First Published: 1963
Type of Plot: Mythic novel
Time of Work: Monday morning to Thursday morning during the second week of January, 1947
Setting: Olinger, Pennsylvania, and a farm outside Olinger near Firetown
Principal Characters: George Caldwell (Chiron), Peter Caldwell (Prometheus), Cassie Caldwell (Ceres), Pop Cramer (Kronos), Al Hummel (Hephaestus), Louis M. Zimmerman (Zeus), Doc Appleton (Apollo), Vera Hummel (Venus)
Genres: Long fiction, Mythological literature, Magical Realism
rising action ·
Themes: Teaching or teachers, Family or family life, United States or Americans, Adolescence, 1940’s, High schools or high school students, Sacrifice