Can someone please read this over and edit it for corrections....its pretty bad. Tenses are probably off...
NaivetÚ, a Triumph or Downfall?
Within fiction, authors often use the persona and substance of a specific character to portray a certain truth. Whether or not the naive character uncovers this truth triumphantly or plummets to a fated downfall is solely up to the character. In both Frank O'Connor's "First Confessions" and Tallent's "No One's A Mystery", na´vetÚ between both narrators is exhibited under two dissimilar outcomes through the prevail of a "wise" youth and the downfall of an idealistic dreamer. Both stories share a similar use of elements and conventions to help place emphasis on the lesson learned, and strengthen the morality of the story.
The characters, as depicted in both stories, share a significant individual that foils the other to help highlight the various facets of the main character's personality. In "First Confessions", Jackie is portrayed as an innocent child who displays ignorance as well as a lack of bias. No change is expressed in Jackie's behavior whether in the Church confessional or at home. Distinctions of this naivety in behavior is shown when he confesses to the priest stating, "I had it all arranged to kill my grandmother...I was thinking I could chop that up and carry it away in a barrow I have." Jackie's absolute admission to murderous intentions presents his lack of understanding upon the matter. In contrast to Jackie is his sister Nora. Nora holds a hypocritical "church" persona in which Jackie is able to perceive with his slight wisdom of youth. Compared to Jackie, Nora only proves to show somewhat decency when she steps foot into church. She mocks Jackie by exhibiting "pity" exclaiming, "Oh, god help us! Isn't it a terrible pity you weren't a good boy? Oh, Jackie, my heart bleeds for you! How will you ever think of all your sins?" Little to Nora's knowing, the priest understands Jackie's sense of fear and rewards him with subtle penance. The overall understanding of the situation is displayed as Jackie realizes that the perception of confession is not all it is inclined to be.
In "No One's A Mystery", the narrator is depicted as an immature optimist who lacks the true understanding of commitment. She appears to be to blinded by the nature of her "lover", Jack. As the narrator holds the na´vetÚ of youth, Jack possesses the wisdom of experience. He holds a cynical yet realistic outlook on the overall outcome of their "secret" relationship with each other. Jack's awareness of the situation is administered when he states, "In a year you'll write, 'I wonder what I ever really saw in Jack. I wonder why I spent so many days just riding around in his pickup. It's true he taught me something about sex..." but the narrator replies to the statement, "I won't write that." Both characters share a different perspective on the future as Jack realizes a inevitable end while the narrator idealizes a never ending, romantic adventure. Through his statements, it is implied that Jack has contributed in similar affairs prior to the one engaged currently. Even though the narrator has been wrapped in a deep love for Jack, it can be stated that she was not the only one. The distinction of maturity levels separates the mature, married one from the immature, "single" one. Jack's exhibit's a lack of change in which will be the acid that corrodes the narrator's romantic, idealized visions of the future. Unfortunately, similar to Jack's former lovers, the narrator is bound to face the imminent doom when Jack searches for new prey to feast on.
In summation, naivetÚ is displayed under two different perspectives with two dissimilar outcomes in the stories discussed. The na´vetÚ of Jackie resulted in an achievement of self awakening and understanding of situations more clearly. In contrast, the na´vetÚ of the narrator in "No One's A Mystery" expressed no change but will prove to have a broken heart as time elapses. The personality and outcomes of these characters proved to stylistically be displayed through their individual foils in their respective stories.