1. Symbolism: mountain, rope, voice
  2. Narrative voice/ Narrative perspective/ Point of narration: Joe Simpson and Simon Yates
  3. Figurative language: Simile, metaphor, personification, hyperbole
  4. Imagery: the combination of descriptive language and techniques used for certain effects
  5. Conflict (tension like moments) – created through word choice and syntax.
  6. Syntax (sentence structure) -different types have different effects
  7. Climax/ turning point: syntax, word choice, dialogue
  8. Dialogue: different speaker trails

QUESTION: describe a place or time where a main character felt very comfortable or uncomfortable in the written text. Explain how techniques helped you to understand the characters reaction(s). Techniques could include figures of speech, syntax, word choice, style, symbolism, structure, or narrative point of view.

Joe or Simon??


  1. He felt uncomfortable because in this situation his life depends on Simon’s decision, and he didn’t know what choice simon was going to make. This questions their friendship. There was no chance of Simon hauling me up. It would have been extremely hard with a solid belay. Sitting in the snow seat, it would be suicidal to attempt it.”

  2. He felt uncomfortable because he was completely out of control of the situation. “I stopped shouting at Simon. I knew he was in the same position as me, unable to move.” ~ p. 99

  3. Uncomfortable because he was in a life or death position for a long time and was most likely getting ready for his death. Thinking about how Simon was likely to die too, he didn’t want Simon to die, he had no reason to. “Each thought of death, of mine or his, came quite unemotionally… I was too tired to care. Perhaps if I was scared I would fight harder.” ~ p. 99…… “I hope Simon doesn’t die, that’s hard… he shouldn’t die for me.” ~ p. 99 

“Words wasted into the snow and wind, shouted to no one in particular in a shaking fury of bitterness and grievance. Idiot words, as meaningless as the hissing empty wind around me.”

“I accepted that I was to die. There was no alternative. It caused me no dreadful fear.” ~ p. 107

“Everything came down to me . It was my knee that was smashed. had fallen, and I was dying and Simon with me.” ~ p. 100

Joe didn’t want Simon to die because it would have been his fault and he felt like he was the one that deserved to die.

In the book Touching The Void by Joe Simpson, a place or time where the main character felt very comfortable or uncomfortable, and techniques were used to help me understand the character’s reaction(s), was when Joe had fallen off the side of the cliff and was dangling by the rope which Simon was holding onto. This moment in the text used some important language techniques to help me understand what was Joe was feeling. The three uncomfortable points I found Joe was trying to portray include, his and Simon’s friendship being put the test, Joe being able to be in a situation with no control over the outcome, and lastly, the thought of having to possibly leave everything at home behind if he were to fall to his death.



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