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Word Count: 634
In Oroonoko Behn establishes her authority within the opening lines and consistently reminds her audience of her position as narrator by mentioning her personal role in the story In the second paragraph Behn establishes this authority by saying I was myself an eyewitness to a great part of what you will find here set down and what I could not be witness of I received from the mouth of the chief actor in this history the hero himself who gave us the whole transactions of his youth1867 In this passage Behn uses first person and testifies that she was indeed a personal acquaintance of Oroonoko She also says that Oroonoko gave her his life history from his own mouth The rest of Oroonoko Behn was herself an eyewitness This also means that the author and the narrator are one single entity Behn acknowledges that it is she who writes this story through her own narration In other words the narrator is not a character of the story but the authoritative author Throughout the first half of the story Behn maintains an aura of authority through various devices She speaks to her readers almost as if in an informal conversation using contractions such as em Behn also frequently uses asides such as in the following There is a certain ceremony in these cases to be observed which I forgot to ask him how performed but twas concluded on both sides that in obedience to him 1872 In this Behn draws her readers into an intimate account of a personal story To strengthen her position Behns account is wrought with detail One would assume that the readers of her time would be quite unfamiliar with her subject matter so she seeks to enlighten with descriptions of detail For example Behn describes Oroonoko he was pretty tall but of a shape the most exact that can be fancied The most famous statuary could not form the figure
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