Crick explains some of the theories proposed by those who lived in the Fens after the death of Sarah Atinkinson, one admitedly far fetched because it endows the paralized matriarch with supernatural powers with which she watched over the Fens quietly. This theory is followed by a less controversial one which says that Sarah was mad and would come back into conciousness every once in while. Crick uses the following transition between these two theories:
Until shortly before the immediate action of the story, she has been working with the elderly in a home. She has given up that job. By doing so, he makes himself a part of the history he is teaching, relating his tales to local history and genealogy.
The headmaster tries to entice Tom into taking an early retirement at a decent pension. Tom resists because his leaving would mean that the History Department would cease to exist and history would simply be combined with the broader area of General Studies.
She testifies that God told her to do it. The publicity that attends her arrest reflects badly on the school, and Tom is told that he now must go into retirement. He is given no alternative. This is the bare frame of a story that becomes extremely complicated and convoluted.
Tom uses his impending forced retirement as an excuse to unfold an extremely interesting story to his students. The bulk of Waterland is devoted to this story that, before it is done, covers some three hundred years of local history and relates it to the broader historical currents of those three centuries.
Tom even makes occasional brief excursions to Anglo-Saxon times in telling his tales. His wife dies when Tom is eight years old. Mary is also reared by her father because her mother died giving birth to her.
He sees that his daughter receives strict religious training and that she attends a good church school. As Mary matures, her interest in men grows, and she and Tom slip into an affair.
It is discovered that Mary is pregnant. Mary says that he is not and lies to him, telling him that sixteen-year-old Freddie Parr is the father, although she has not had an affair with Freddie.
Dick, distraught at this information, struggles with the drunken Freddie, who cannot swim, and pushes him into the River Leem. Mary tries to provoke a miscarriage but fails, so she and Tom, the father of the child, go to Mary Clay, an old crone, who performs an abortion that leaves Mary sterile.
Her father forces her into seclusion, and for three years she remains isolated, engaging largely in prayer and meditation. Tom is away fighting in World War II.
Finally the two fathers agree to bring their children together again; unknown to them, Tom has already written to Mary. They live thus for more than thirty years; then Mary gives up her job and becomes actively involved in the church. Obviously demented and obviously suffering from a pain that has been festering since her teenage abortion, Mary is arrested.
Tom, as recounted above, is forced into an early retirement as a result of this disgrace. A secondary plot involves the Atkinson family, which has run a brewery for many generations. This subplot is interwoven intricately into the development and resolution of the primary plot.History and Story Telling in Graham Swift's Waterland Waterland uses history, theory, and fictional biography to address the question of history.
The blurring of boundaries between history, story, and theory questions the construction of those boundaries as well as the closure and linear nature of traditional narrative.
Graham Swift was born in and is the author of ten novels, three collections of short stories, and Making an Elephant, a book of essays, portraits, poetry, and reflections on his life in writing.
With Waterland, he won the Guardian Fiction Award, and. In Graham Swift's Waterland brought attention to an esteemed new voice in English fiction. The Guardian called it "the best novel of the year," and it was a finalist for the Booker Prize. Mr. In , a film version of Waterland was released, directed by Stephen Gyllenhaal and starring Jeremy Irons.
The adaptation retained some major plot points but moved the contemporary location to Pittsburgh, and eliminated many of the extensive historical asides. Further reading. Bentley, Nick.
"Graham Swift, Waterland". In Waterland Graham Fast not really just details the issue of the concerns his learners encounter in the right here and right now, and the potential customer of a nightmarish potential; but, he also provides an less likely remedy in Mary Crick’s theory of background as description and personal tale.
In a brief summary, can you explain "Waterland" by Graham Swift? As the story begins, the main character, Tom Crick, is remembering childhood in eastern England.