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 Discuss the role of the point of view in “The Woman Who Had Imagination” by H.E. Bates. 

Point of View Definition
Point of view is the perspective from which a story is told; the narrator’s position in relation to the story. In short fiction, who tells the story and how it is told are critical issues for an author to decide. The tone and feel of the story, and even its meaning, can change radically depending on who is telling the story. Remember, someone is always between the reader and the action of the story. That someone is telling the story from his or her own point of view. This angle of vision, the point of view from which the people, events, and details of a story are viewed, is important to consider when reading a story.
Types of Point of View
The point of view may be first person, third person, or less commonly, second person. In addition, third-person perspectives maybe third person limited or third-person omniscient.
Objective Point of View
With the objective point of view, the writer tells what happens without stating more than can be inferred from the story’s action and dialogue. The narrator never discloses anything about what the characters think or feel, remaining a detached observer.
Third Person Point of View
Here the narrator does not participate in the action of the story as one of the characters but lets us know exactly how the characters feel. We learn about the characters through this outside voice.
First Person Point of View
In the first-person point of view, the narrator does participate in the action of the story. When reading stories in the first person, we need to realize that what the narrator is recounting might not be the objective truth. We should question the trustworthiness of accounting.
Omniscient point of View A narrator who knows everything about all the characters is all-knowing, or omniscient.
Limited Omniscient Points of View
A narrator whose knowledge is limited to one character, either major or minor, has a limited omniscient point of view.

Point of View in “The Woman Who Had Imagination”

H. E. Bates’s primary concern as a writer was for the individual and the forces that threaten his or her happiness or fulfillment. Bates is not, however, a political, social, moral, or philosophical theorist; ideas as such play almost no part in his fiction. Most of his protagonists are “ordinary” people—farmers, laborers, waitresses, housewives, children, pensioners, and young men of no particular education or accomplishments. As in “The Women Who Had Imagination” the major focus seems to be on the life of a young man Henry. Henry belongs to an ordinary with no particular education. And there is also Maddalena who, though belongs to an aristocratic family, is subjected to stay with the four walls of the mansion.

The author has used a third-person point-of-view narrative in the story. The narrator does not participate in the action of the story as one of the characters but lets us know exactly how the characters feel. We learn about the characters through this outside voice.

His description of events and characters is very much effective. The selection of words is apt and accurate. The narrator takes us into the minds of the characters so that we may know their real worth. The pathetic condition of Maddalena is revealed to us objectively and the same is the case delineation of Henty’s character.

The use of a sort of narrative within the narrative in the form of the fishmonger is important too. The information that we get about the old comes to us through this fishmonger. It is he who tells Henry about the lake that why it has been banned for the visitors. It is he who tells her that Maddalena is a woman of great imagination. The fishmonger also tells us why Maddalena has married the old man, “it needed a bit of imagination to marry that old co……..”

Again H.E.Bates’ narration is simple and impressive. The prose style is altogether sober and unornamented and at some points he gets poetic that adds to the alluring aspect of prose. As one of the critics has aptly opined,
“Bates’ art at its clearest, simplest, and most impressive — an art which, although it is expressed in a beautifully sober and unornamented prose style, is pitched very often in an almost poetic key.”

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