In the COMPREHENDING SECTION of your ATAR English exam you could be asked to discuss the significance of the narrative point of view.
So! Best you know the difference between them! 🤙😉
It is RARE to come across 2nd person pov texts. These are the “Choose-your-own-adventure” sort of texts (“You climb up over the wall to see…”)
👁️👁️ FIRST PERSON POV 👁️👁️
The narrator is part of the story (I, me). You are inside their head and see directly through the eyes.
Therefore, this point of view can very SUBJECTIVE and BIAS because the character’s interpretation of events or the action is directly INFLUENCED by their personal experiences, opinions, attitudes or motivations.
E.G. In "A Handmaid’s Tale" we share what Offred knows, experiences and remembers, but she has a very limited view of the world due to her position. We have to trust her about Gilead and what happens to her.
So, first person point of view narrators can be UNRELIABLE.
👀 THIRD PERSON POV 👀
The narrator is an observer of the action or events (they, he, she, it). They are an outsider looking in.
They may be LIMITED (i.e. focus on the thoughts and feelings of one character) or OMNISCIENT (i.e. can go into the thoughts of many or all of the characters, sometimes called Eye-of-God narration).
These narrators are more OBJECTIVE and RELIABLE because they have no self interest in the events occurring.
In some cases, they may show concern for the characters or comment on the action, such as Death does in "The Book Thief", but this is unusual. For the most part they just report the story.
And that’s it! Simples! 😊