The language employed in the excerpt from The Bell Jar is American English. Sylvia Plath does not over-embellish her text, so the excerpt is easy to read and understand.


One of the key linguistic techniques employed by Plath is imagery. In the following extract, visual imagery is used to help readers imagine the way Doctor Gordon’s office looks like:

Doctor Gordon’s waiting room was hushed and beige. The walls were beige, and the carpets were beige, and the upholstered chairs and sofas were beige. There were no mirrors or pictures, only certificates from different medical schools, with Doctor Gordon’s name in Latin, hung about the walls (…) At first I wondered why the room felt so safe. Then I realized it was because there were no windows. (p. 223, ll. 1-10)



Several similes have the role of helping readers better understand Esther’s state of mind. For instance, she sees the future “stretching ahead like a series of bright, white boxes” (p. 224, ll. 3-… 




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