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An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Ambrose Bierce was an American writer of sardonic short stories based on themes of death and horror. An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge is about a man named Peyton Farquhar. He was a well-off southern planter from Alabama. Peyton, who was “ardently devoted to the Southern cause,” was prevented from joining the army by circumstance and was eager to serve the South in any way possible. One evening, while he was sitting with his wife, a gray-clad soldier rode up, asked for water, and told them that the Northern army was preparing to advance once the bridge over Owl Creek had been repaired. The soldier indicated that the bridge was poorly guarded and that a brave man could easily burn it down. Farquhar undertook the challenge of destroying the bridge and was captured. The last sentence of section two reveals that the planter never had a chance, because the grey-clad soldier was, in fact, a “Federal scout.” The short story An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge is an incredible work of fiction. The choice to tell this story from an omniscient point of view is what made this story phenomenal. Because readers are experiencing all of the emotions that the condemned man felt, they are drawn into his private world. If readers had heard this from a more traditional point of view, it wouldn't have been near as touching or personal as it was. The way the story is told gave the impression that the reader was there, floating above it, and witnessing every moment. You can listen online to free English audiobook “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge” by Ambrose Bierce on our website.

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