Author surrogate

From Academic Kids

As a literary technique, an author surrogate is a character who expresses the ideas, questions, personality and morality of the author.

Frequently, the author surrogate is the same as the main character and/or the protagonist, and is also often the narrator. As an example, the author surrogate may be the one who delivers political diatribe, expressing the author's beliefs at an appropriate time, or expound on the strengths and weakness of other characters, thereby communicating directly the author's opinion on the characters in question.

Most stories have an author surrogate, in that the author is usually capable of pointing to one character (major or minor) whom he or she identifies with to a much greater degree than any other character. This can take the form of a realistic depiction of the author (Benjamin in Animal Farm), or a negative (Woody Allen) or positive depiction of the author.

Other notable author surrogates include Geoffrey Chaucer in The Canterbury Tales, Dante Alighieri in The Divine Comedy, Paul Auster in the New York Trilogy, Isaac Asimov in Murder at the ABA, Martin Amis in Money, Jorge Luis Borges in The Book of Sand and Charlie Kaufman in the film Adaptation.

Perhaps one of the best known is Kilgore Trout, author surrogate to Kurt Vonnegut. Vonnegut makes no secret of the fact, and meets Trout personally more than once in his works.

In fan fiction, an idealised author surrogate is known as a Mary Sue. This characteristic of some fan fiction is viewed quite negatively by many enthusiasts of the medium.

The expression has also been used in a different sense, meaning the principal author of a multi-author document.[1] (http://hnn.us/roundup/entries/8290.html)

See Also:

Mary Sue

Compare: audience surrogate, autobiographical novel. Template:Unreferenced

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