Two Views of the River Essay


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Mark Twain writes an effective comparison and contrast of his views on a river in the short excerpt “Two Views of a River”, found on page 203 in . The College Writer: A guide to thinking, writing, and researching . Twain writes with the purpose of engaging his readers to a subject that he cares about and writes of with intense emotion. He uses stimulating ideas to hold the attention of the reader by using many sensory details of the majestic river and then urges his audience to understand how he, just as they, could hold two views of one thing. The excerpt is very reader-friendly and flows smoothly with artistic fluency.


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The piece seems to only get more interesting with each reading of it and the fluency and word choice are so that it seems very poetic and musical. Twain does compare the river to a poem and his work seems to mirror the same type of poetry. Just as he talks of the beauty and the color of the river, the piece is comparatively colorful and beautiful. But, just as he writes of something being acquired and something being lost, an obvious contrast, the same fate it that of his audience. When the reader discovers the meaning of Twain’s words than the mysterious search for meaning is lost and the knowledge of what he means is acquired.


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The words flow smoothly and are engaging, his purpose is to instigate deep and critical thought, to communicate through comparison and contrast the many facets of what we see and what we know. In essence, the beauty is in the discovery and the darkness is in the end of newness, questioning, and within professional conformity. “Two Views of the River” in VanderMey, Meyer, Van Rys, and Sebranek. The College Writer: A guide to thinking, writing, and researching . Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.


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