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What We Talk About When We Talk About Love

RAYMOND CARVERS “WHAT WE TALK ABOUT WHEN WE TALK ABOUT LOVE”

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Stories, be they written or on screen, usually employ setting as a backdrop and having no direct relation to the actual storyline progression. This, however, is not the case in Raymond Carver?s tale ?What We Talk About When We Talk About Love.? In this short story, a single element ? sunlight ? reflects(no pun intended) the progression of the story, showing a direct relation between the characters openness in talking about love, their knowledge on the subject, their mood, the point of discussion as well as their confidence in their own abilities. As we will soon see, the element of sunlight will take us into four different levels of progression, helping us to dissect and better understand its role within the story.

In the first phase of the story, when ?Sunlight filled the kitchen from the big window behind the sink? the mood in the room is one of general happiness; the two couples are joking with each other, smiling and being affectionate as we see when Nick admires Laura?s fingers and also kisses her hand. (Carver 170) Their main point of discussion is about Terri?s ex-boyfriend, Ed, and how mentally

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