In the introduction, the author explains that he'll use third person to refer to himself:

After much thought, I decided to write this book as a third-person account. For me it is a natural form of expression. One of the characteristics of intelligence is that one develops the habit of viewing oneself from aside, to ensure objectivity of judgment. That habit becomes second nature, and I believe events are seen more clearly from this vantage point. Besides, in this introduction I have almost exhausted my reserve of Is.

Is there an established term for this literary device, especially for autobiographical books?

1 Answer 1


This is simply known as third-person narration. This technique is far from new. A notable user of third-person narration was Julius Caesar in his Commentarii de Bello Gallico / Commentaries on the Gallic War, written in the first century BCE. For a slightly older example, see Xenophon's Anabasis, written in the fourth century BCE. Both are autobiographical narratives using a third-person perspective.

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