The Significance of Aesthetic Description in the Perspective of the Narrator

“It was translated to him word for word, and the enclosure, a cheque for one hundred rupees, was handed to him. A big crowd gathered to watch this scene. Singh pressed the letter to his eyes. He beat his brow, and wailed: ‘Tell me, sir, am I mad or not?'” (Narayan 34)

“There they stood facing each other on the floor of the compartment Rajam Iyer was seized by a sense of inferiority. The newcomer stood nine clean inches over him. He began to feel ridiculous, short and fat, wearing a loose dhot and a green coat, while the newcomer towered above him in his grease-spotted khaki suit” (Narayan 57)

Notes: Variations in the third person narrator – Hemingway-esque exteriority vs. omniscient, psychological perspective. Minimalist description vs. expansive, aesthetic detail. The connection between aesthetic detail and interiority  – would a perspective lacking the psychological component be as effective in maintaining its exteriority with the incorporation of more vivid aesthetic detail? If the first excerpt included an image about Singh’s “grease-spotted” clothing, how would it change the perspective of the narrator? Are aesthetic descriptions based on visual objectivity or do they contain subjective visions?

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