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In what ways does James' presentation of the relationship between Catherine and Morris help shape the reader's judgement and responses?
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Henry James uses different narrative techniques to emphasise the inappropriateness of Morris Townsend as suitor to Catherine Sloper. James especially uses narrative irony to present the reader with a clear picture of the type of relationship shared by Catherine and Morris. This helps to shape the reader's judgement and responses to their relationship. The structure of the extract is the first thing that catches the reader's attention. The numerous "silences" illustrates the lack of communication between the couple. When conversation is made, it appears to be very predictable, moving from marriage to promises of love. Morris seems to enjoy...
the reader to doubt whether he is marrying for love. His immediate rejection of Catherine's offers of being rich emphasises this point, as it is unrealistic to be so against money. Catherine's naivety is illustrated as she rejects the idea of him being a mercenary immediately, concluding that "[he] is not" a mercenary.

Catherine's naivety is accentuated by her inability to realise the true nature of her lover. Her innocence makes her a character of "simple moral goodness" and is used by James to show the contrast of this simple moral goodness to the cunning Morris.

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