On the Motif of Death in Julian Barnes’ The Sense of an Ending

Wenquan WU


This paper sets out to elaborate the theme of death in Julian Barnes’ Man Booker Prize awarded novel The Sense of an Ending. The author is convinced that the two suicides respectively of Robson and Adrian, as well as the death of Mrs. Ford, manage to lay bare the profound impacts of the drastic social changes on people of various social classes. The decline of religion and the rise of various schools of thought, the dismantling of the traditional family and the rising self-confidence of the woman, and the serious class clashes all complicate interpersonal communications and result in various tragic endings. 


Death; Suicide; Camus; Class; Damage

Full Text:



Barnes, J. (2011). The sense of an ending. New York, NY: Alfred A. Knopf.

Barnes, J. (2008). Nothing to be frightened of. London: Vintage.

Barnes, J. (2012). Through the window. London: Vintage.

Christopher, D. (1999). British culture. London: Routledge.

Childs, P. (2011). Julian Barnes. Manchester: Manchester University Press.

Camus, A. (1983). The myth of sisyphus and other essays. New York: Vintage International.

Du, X. Z. (1987). Albert camus. In G. P. Zhou (Ed.), Philosophers as poets. Shanghai: Shanghai People’s Publishing House.

Foley, J. (2008). Albert camus: From the absurd to revolt. Stocksfield: Acumen Publishing.

Gray, J. G. (1951). The idea of death in existentialism. The Journal of Philosophy, 48(5), 113-127.

Wood, M. (1994). The contemporary novel. In J. Richetti (Ed.), The Columbia history of the British novel. New York, NY: Columbia University Press.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/%25x


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c)


  • How to do online submission to another Journal?
  • If you have already registered in Journal A, then how can you submit another article to Journal B? It takes two steps to make it happen:

1. Register yourself in Journal B as an Author

  • Find the journal you want to submit to in CATEGORIES, click on “VIEW JOURNAL”, “Online Submissions”, “GO TO LOGIN” and “Edit My Profile”. Check “Author” on the “Edit Profile” page, then “Save”.

2. Submission

Online Submissionhttp://cscanada.org/index.php/css/submission/wizard

  • Go to “User Home”, and click on “Author” under the name of Journal B. You may start a New Submission by clicking on “CLICK HERE”.
  • We only use four mailboxes as follows to deal with issues about paper acceptance, payment and submission of electronic versions of our journals to databases: caooc@hotmail.com; office@cscanada.net; ccc@cscanada.net; ccc@cscanada.org

 Articles published in Canadian Social Science are licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 (CC-BY).


Canadian Social Science Editorial Office

Address: 1020 Bouvier Street, Suite 400, Quebec City, Quebec, G2K 0K9, Canada.
Telephone: 1-514-558 6138 
Website: Http://www.cscanada.net; Http://www.cscanada.org 
E-mail:caooc@hotmail.com; office@cscanada.net

Copyright © Canadian Academy of Oriental and Occidental Culture