Caught in the Crossfire by Alan Gibbons Essay

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How does Gibbons use language and structure to convey a sense of fear in the novel? Fear is an emotional response from dangerous situations. In Psychology, It is a vital reaction to physical and emotional danger - simply put, we need fear to stay safe and protected. There are three types of fear: Superstitious, when you fear something that has been dramatised by your own imagination; Intelligent, when you fear something that is purely based on your knowledge of the world around you; Uncertainty, the fear of the unknown. Although these fears seem different, most people will experience a fear (or phobia) that consists of the three types. During the novel, ‘Caught in the crossfire’, Alan Gibbons manipulates the sense of fear to affect the reader. He adds suspicion and tension which increase as the book continues; these feelings are easily turned into fear. He does this by adding various language and structural features in his novel. Gibbons uses language to create fear in his novel. Throughout the book, he adds different metaphors; one of which is when Rabia states, if you ‘choose to stand in no-man’s land you’re likely to be shot at’. This indicates, in her area of society, things are falling apart: people are picking sides, ready for war. The audience anticipate a conflict of some sort, therefore creating a sense of fear. The fear in this case would mostly be ‘Superstitious’ fear. Another Language technique used throughout the book to create a sense of fear is rhetorical questions. An example of this is, ‘But it isn’t going to happen, is it?’ This forces the reader to be empathic by thinking in the characters position. Most readers would then be able to sense the characters anxiety or paranoia and experience that emotion. When doing this, it puts the reader in specific situations, so as to feel the fear through a character. In his book, ‘Caught in

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