Post 18

Manfred Jahn’s description of an ellipsis is practically represented in all of Gabriel García Márquez’s writing along with Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra’s Don Quixote. Authors seem to use this technique quite often because it proves to be very useful when describing scenes that don’t include many significant details.

ellipsis/cut/omission A stretch of story time which is not textually represented at all. ‘The discourse halts, though time continues to pass in the story’ (Chatman 1978: 70). Some critics consider ellipsis a special case of speed-up. Genette (1980 [1972]: 93, 95, 106-109); Rimmon-Kenan (1983: 53); Toolan (1988: 56).” (Jahn N5.2.3)

An ellipsis, or a cut in time, saves the reader and author from reading and writing unnecessary information that may be irrelevant to the plot. This is seen in Don Quixote’s scene with the Cave of Montesinos where the reader skips over approximately a half hour of empty story time, which in reality only took thirty seconds to read through. These time lapses are also present in Nabo’s tale where he has grown from a young boy to a full-grown adult, causing a ruckus at the end of the story as he tries to regain consciousness. What originally only took about fifteen minutes to have read, spanned over fifteen years in story time. An ellipsis is a very beneficial tool in writing, otherwise, literature would take years to complete and read.

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