• Rewrite TFC with a different POV

    Are you up to rewrite an extract from the novel with a different point of view?

  • Well, I've just received Loïs work and it's just awesome!

    She decided to tell The Fifth Child story with a different point of view. The scene describes a dialogue between Dr Brett and the nurses. They are talking about David & Harriet.

    You'll find below the text first and then the explanation.

    Thank you Loïs again for your excellent work! Thank you so much!


     Possible Xblogtation: We should make our pupils rewrite a text (here TFC) with a different point of view.


    The text :

    Dr Brett came in the room. He moved toward the coffee machine and pressed the button. He looked his cup filling slowly with the dark liquid, the one which was going to give him the energy to finish the night. A nurse came next to him, waiting for the machine to be free.

    “Well, tough day isn’t it?” she said to him, expressing sympathy.

    “Oh yeah, five deliveries… “He answered. He looked exhausted.

    “And that one this morning wasn’t easy! God, I’ve never seen a mother so hostile to her child! “she claimed.

    Another nurse who was present during this delivery came to them in order to join the discussion.

    “Absolutely, refusing to nurse the baby, refusing to go out of bed… “she says, almost shivering with disgust.

    Dr Brett was nodding.

    “She’s got four other kids you know, she wasn’t like that during the other deliveries. I really don’t understand what’s going on in her head… During the pregnancy she was like “he’s not normal, that baby is a monster”   quite frightening.” Added the doctor, and then he drank his coffee.

    “I heard her say to her husband the poor kid looked like a troll! “The younger nurse said in a highly disapproval way.

    “Well, he’s not a pretty baby but come on, how a mother can say something like that!” exclaimed her colleague, misunderstanding.

    “ I think she’s simply victim of tiredness, first, and now the baby is here, I suspect a postpartum depression. That’s very usual, you remember this woman who was crying louder than her baby?” he was almost laughing. “It’s hard to be a mother, she’ll accept her new baby soon, all of them –well, almost- do.  But personally I’m quite worried about her health. This woman is bone tired! She had five children in a very short time “Dr Brett told.

    “Phew, lucky me, I’m on the pill!” said one of the nurses, laughing.

    “ My pill is work, I work so much I don’t have the time to make babies ! “ added the other one, bursting out laughing.  “Well, actually, talking about work, it’s time for us to start again Peggy, break’s over !” she announced to her colleague.

    The two women said goodbye to the Doctor and disappeared in the hospital corridor. Dr Brett stayed a moment, lost in his thoughts. He was thinking about this new baby in the Lovatt family. He was wondering if Harriet was able to overcome her postnatal depression. He had felt anger and bitterness in her behavior toward the child, negative emotions, and he was asking himself how it was going to evolve. He had already seen mothers rejecting their babies at first, but then they were becoming loving mothers, and were accepting their children. But sometimes, it was not so easy. When he was working in the mental hospital he met a woman who was there because she killed her new born.

    Dr Brett had a shiver remembering this crazy woman, how she was singing lullabies all day long : she believed her baby was still alive, and usually took care of a rolled blanket, thinking it was her baby.

    The old doctor pulled himself together: no, Harriet wasn’t like that, she’ll finally accept this baby, after all he was not a monster, he was not pretty, yes, but he looked smart, his eyes yet focusing on everything…  Dr Brett finished his coffee and went back to work.


    Analysis and explanation:

    This text deals with Dr Brett and the nurses’ point of view on Harriet and Ben. I did this because I think in this book; the reader is always manipulated by D.L, thanks to the point of view. I think most of the time we have Harriet’s point of view, so I wanted to show that maybe the other characters, and especially characters from the outside, and a doctor and nurses (who have many experiences of pregnancies, deliveries) can have a very different vision of the things. Here Dr Brett and two nurses present during Ben’s delivery are talking during their break. The nurses were shocked by Harriet behavior, and the doctor his convinced Harriet is suffering of the classical and quite common postnatal depression. I made researches about this syndrome, because when you see Harriet’s behavior, she’s clearly rejecting the baby. But I had heard that sometimes it was happening, because woman had a depression after birth, and that it was normal, and most of the time the mother succeeds overcoming this crisis. So I thought maybe Harriet is simply a victim of that, but because she is really tired, this crisis lasts a little longer. But when you think about it, after the institution episode, she is becoming a mother! But it’s too late; Ben has became violent and unsociable because she was rejecting him.

    Then I imagined that Dr Brett could be worried about Harriet, because he knows she is really tired, and as a doctor he knows sometimes crazy mothers hurt their children.

    I also made Dr Brett say that Ben is perfectly normal, he’s just, well, an ugly baby.

    I put a touch of humor in the text to make it more realistic. But the jokes of the nurses on the pill are also there to show first that it’s the sixties, and that Harriet and David’s dream is old fashioned, because sixties girls just aspire to sexual freedom, and probably doesn’t want a lot of children, and then that shows that Harriet and David’s dream can be considered as a nightmare for lot of people, because having a lot of children demands attention, work, and is really exhausting.


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