Style of language

The language used by Peter Goldsworthy in the short story “One of My Best Friends” is Australian English. The narrative uses many colloquialisms, which highlight the narrator’s personality and bias against certain social categories. For example, colloquial terms are used when the narrator describes the outcasts at school: “the dunces, the stammerers and stutterers, the fatsos” (p. 78, ll. 22-23). This shows that the narrator makes no effort in getting to know his friends and that he only sees them as a means to an end.

Colloquialisms are also used when the narrator talks about Willy. For instance, instead of saying that Willy was arrested, he says that he “got pinched” (p. 79, l. 42). When Willy talks to his teammates, he uses the colloquial terms “bloke” (p. 81, l. 38) and “feller” (p. 81, l. 38), which are both informal terms for “man”. Instead of saying that he plays football, the narrator talks about “footy” (p. 89, l. 31), and he uses the word “aggro” (p. 81, l. 21) instead of “aggression”. Thes...

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