"Tom Outland's Story" by Ian Williams.

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Pages: 4
(approximately 235 words/page)

Essay Database > Literature > English
An Inspirational Diary Located in the middle of Willa Cather's The Professor's House, the diary of deceased Tom Outland is edited by his friend and mentor, Professor St. Peter. The author inserts the diary, called "Tom Outland's Story," to balance the beginning and the ending of the book, where there is a drastic change in the history professor's character that is similar to Tom's. The editing experience sparks a life-changing revelation that is initiated by …

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…which is seemingly random and has no conscious effect on the plot, somehow subconsciously influences the professor in some way as to provoke a revelation of forgetting regrets. With this, it is apparent that "Tom Outland's story" somehow creates a balance for the book by being used as a bridge that connects the contrasting characteristics of the professor that were displayed before and after Tom's story. Without Tom's story, the book would be undoubtedly incomprehensible.