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Perfume Style & Presentation

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Ben Huang

on 12 November 2012

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Transcript of Perfume Style & Presentation

Ben Danielle Mohsin Perfume Style & Psychology Antihero Narrative Perspective - is defined as a protagonist that lacks the attributes of a typical hero.
- Grenouille is an antihero mainly because of his actions. He commits 25
horrible murders and after feels no guilt.
- A typical hero is one who performs heroic acts such as helping or saving
others. Grenouille harms and manipulates other characters.
- Another reason why one can consider him to be an antihero is because
Grenouille is an unlikeable character as a result of his personality; he is
quite antisocial, incapable of love and is ultimately a gifted abomination.
Throughout the book Grenouille is presented as a tick.
- By characterizing him as a tick the author is not giving Grenouille
characteristics of a typical hero. A tick is a parasitic creature that feeds of
others for its own benefit. A hero can be described as the exact opposite. Third Person Omniscient - All knowing, sees thoughts of all characters in the book.
- Can present the story from the views of other characters. Ex. Antoine Richis
- Can present descriptions of the protagonist from the viewpoints of other characters. Ex. Baldini's thoughts about Grenouille.
- Can "time travel" into the future and reveal certain things about characters.
- Used to develop lots of irony. Ex. Madame Gaillard , Grimal, Baldini Dark Humor - Humor that is viewed as dark, morbid, cruel, offensive, etc.
- Often involves irony
- Many people don't find it funny
- Originated in 19th century
- Ex. Madame Gaillard's death
- Ex. Cyanide and Happiness Direct Characterization The narrative voice describes and builds the personality or persona of the characters. Largely through the use of adjectives or literary elements, mostly similes and metaphors. The use of direct characterization in Perfume helps to separate Grenouille from society. It offers the idea that society doesn’t understand Grenouille, and so it can’t describe him. It also helps the reader to grasp Grenouille’s “abstract” sense of smell. Sub-Genres Horror A genre intended to scare or startle readers. Often creates an eerie and frightening atmosphere. Perfume draws from horror unconventionally, instead of establishing a creepy mood or horrific situation, the horror of perfume comes from how average and normal the atrocities Grenouille commits are made to seem by Suskind. Further, the fact that Grenouille, although not a fitting member of society, is still able to behave appropriately and even exceptionally within the limits of society. Sub-Genres Mystery A genre often associated with detective fiction, but also applied to novels with a focus on a supernatural or thriller mystery. Perfume is a rare form of mystery. It’s backwards. Instead of following the detective, the novel focuses on the criminal and how the rest of society reacts to the crimes. Further the almost “supernatural” olfactory sense Grenouille possesses is a mystery to the reader and to the society in the book. Sub-Genres Magic Realism A genre that applies to fiction where magical occurrences are blended with reality, and accepted as so. The genre’s influence on Perfume is apparent in Grenouilles sense of smell, and may be stretched to his “invincibility”. German Narrative Traditions Expressionism A subjective presentation of the world. Used in perfume with scents, the scents are grenouilles “emotions”. The girls make him feel elated, and in the cave, the scents are his feelings. German Narrative Traditions New Objectivity A presentation of the world in a “business-only” manner, essentially presenting the physical reality only. In all other aspects of the book, the world is very objective. Grenouilles attitude towards life other then scent, his understanding of the world, the description of his surroundings and his interactions with people are very objective. German Narrative Traditions Symbolism German symbolism is often tied to expressionism. It is very subjective and emotional. Symbolism is the opposite of realism, instead of down to earth it is much more idealistic, or imaginative. In perfume symbolism is evident in the olfactory sense, scent relates to sin. Is Grenouille a Sociopath? • Manipulative and Conning

• Grandiose Sense of Self

• Lack of Remorse, Shame or Guilt

• Incapacity for Love

• Callousness/Lack of Empathy

• Poor Behavioral Controls/Impulsive Nature

• Early Behavior Problems/Juvenile Delinquency Answers Manipulative and conning: Grenouille demonstrates these by deceiving other characters in a multitude of ways. One way Grenouille manipulates
others is through the use of various scents. Some scents make Grenouille
invisible while others make people love him.

Grandiose Sense of Self: Grenouille never questions if he is
justified killing the girls nor does he hesitate to take others lives
for his own selfish purposes.

Lack of Remorse, Shame or Guilt: When captured and tortured
Grenouille never gives a reason as to why he killed the girls
other than “I needed them.” Not once does Grenouille apologize
for the murders, one also knows he feels no remorse because as
a reader we know Grenouille never looks back on the murders in
a negative way.

Incapacity for Love: Grenouille never received love as a child
and as a result never could love anyone.

Callousness/Lack of Empathy: Doesn’t feel guilty about his
victims and never feels sorry for the women or the families of
the women he killed.
Answers Pt 2 Poor Behavioral Controls/Impulsive Nature:
Grenouille was not planning to murder the first girl on the rue des Marais, however when she noticed him he was shocked and his first reaction was to strangle the girl.

Early Behavior Problems/Juvenile Delinquency:
All the children living with Mme Gaillard hated Grenouille. They tried to kill him many times; as a result he never experienced friendship or love.

Lack of Realistic Life Plan/Parasitic Lifestyle:
Grenouille was compared to a tick throughout the course of perfume. A tick is a parasitic organism. Grenouille also lived a parasitic lifestyle as
he was always relying and living off of others (i.e: Mme Gaillard,
Baldini etc.)

Criminal or Entrepreneurial Versatility :
Grenouille uses perfume to change others view of him and as a
result uses scents to change his life story. Grenouille also moves
freely from Paris to the mountain and from the mountain to
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