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5LACA - ASantoro _ NORMAL PEOPLE /narrative purpose of the first chapter
by ASantoro - (2019-09-24)
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The purpose of the present text is to find out the narrative purpose of the first chapter of NORMAL PEOPLE by Sally Rooney.

First of all, I think the first purpose is to introduce the  main characters and to characterize them. After reading the section we can know their name, profession, their social backgrounds, their reputations, the way they speak  and their different level of autonomy.

The first character is a teenage boy named Connel. He is one of the most popular students in his school because he is an excellent football player. Even though he is really loved by all his mates, he seems to be somehow insecure: he is the only one always making questions.

The second character is Lorraine, who is Connel’s mother. She is an housekeeper who seems to be a secondary character in the story.

Last but not least comes Marianne. She is one of Connel’s schoolmates. She is not a popular teenager: she has no friends and nobody speaks to her. Her father died some years before and her mother isn’t mentioned in this chapter. From the way she speaks and answers you can notice she is a really confident person who says whatever comes into her mind without any fear to be judjed. Considering this aspect, she appears to be somehow freer than Connel.

After that, another purpose of the chapter is to set the story in a certain time and place. Right from the chapter’s heading the time is clear: “January 2011”. The first month of the year makes the reader feel that something is starting. Considering the place, the section is set at Marianne’s house. Its enormous size  shows Marianne is a wealthy person. Setting the story in a close space the author invoves the reader to focus the attention on the intimate sphere of the characters.

To conclude, another aspect you should consider from this part is the possible bond between the two main characters that is Connel’s mother who seems to work for Marianne’s family.