An analysis of “Survivor Syndrome” by Liz Jensen shows that the short story follows a traditional, chronological plot structure. The story focuses on Dimitri, a photographer who is looking for the picture that perfectly captures the disaster caused by a flood and an epidemic of waterpox in London. The story contains elements of foreshadowing, which prepare the readers for Dimitri’s final decision to allow a boy to drown.
The characters include Dimitri, as the main character, as well as Mr McLaverty, the blond boy, and other Londoners who try to adapt to the harsh living conditions in London. The focus is on Dimitri, as he describes the events and how they affected him.
The events take place in a fictionalized version of London, in several locations. The social setting explores the consequences of natural disasters, people's attitudes in extreme situations, and the role of journalism.
The events are described by Dimitri as a first-person narrator. The narrator’s descriptions of his actions, feelings, and surroundings show how he is affected by being in London.
The language used by the narrator is descriptive. The story is told mostly through narration, which highlights how Dimitri becomes more and more emotionally distant from other people.
You can read a more detailed analysis in the following pages.