The analysis of the short story “Child of God” by Genevieve Abravanel shows that the story has a chronological structure. The narrator recounts the night when she drove drunk, accidentally killing killed a young Amish boy and the aftermath of the accident. 

The main character of the story is the unnamed narrator. She is a young woman who appears to be unwilling to take accountability for her actions and who does not seem to want to change. 

The physical setting of the story is Lancaster, Pennsylvania in the United States. Several clues in the story also help to pinpoint a specific time setting, a weekday night in September. The social setting explores the Amish way of life. 

The story is told from the perspective of a first-person narrator who is also the main character. The narrator’s reliability is at times called into question. 

The events are told using informal and fairly simple language. The use of short sentences helps to reflect the narrator’s frame of mind. 

You can find a full analysis on the following pages. 

Short story analysis

I denne vejledning får du Studienets hjælp til at analysere noveller (short stories) i engelsk.


Below, you can read an excerpt from our study guide: 

It can be said that the story does not reach a traditional climax because the tension does not fully reach a boiling point. Unlike what readers might expect from the meeting between a drunk driver who ran over a young boy and the boy’s family, Amos’s parents are kind and forgiving of the narrator. They do not want her to be punished for her crime, and they also seem to already be at peace with their son’s untimely death:

‘Amos led a good life,’ said the mother. ‘God has him now.’ The mother reached out and touched my hand, her rough fingers closing on my pink acrylic tips. 
‘I was drunk,’ I said. ‘Too drunk to even remember.’ 
The mother squeezed my hand. ‘We forgive you’.

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