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Literature Study GuidesAll The Pretty Horses

All the Pretty Horses | Study Guide

Cormac McCarthy

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Course Hero. "All the Pretty Horses Study Guide." Course Hero. 12 Dec. 2016. Web. 4 June 2023. <>.

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Course Hero. "All the Pretty Horses Study Guide." December 12, 2016. Accessed June 4, 2023.


Course Hero, "All the Pretty Horses Study Guide," December 12, 2016, accessed June 4, 2023,


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Cormac McCarthy

Year Published





Adventure, Romance

Perspective and Narrator

The events of All the Pretty Horses are described by a third-person omniscient narrator, who alternates between extensive or sparse descriptions, abrupt movements in time, and nonspecific dialogue. There are also moments where the narrator's generally concise style is contrasted by references to the future or interjections of opinion.


All the Pretty Horses is written in the present tense.

About the Title

The title All the Pretty Horses is inspired by a lullaby of unknown origin that perhaps first dates to between 1600 and 1800: "Hush-a-bye, don't you cry/Go to sleep, my little baby/When you wake, you shall have/All the pretty little horses." The themes of dreaming and childhood contrast sharply with the violence of the novel.


This study guide and infographic for Cormac McCarthy's All the Pretty Horses offer summary and analysis on themes, symbols, and other literary devices found in the text. Explore Course Hero's library of literature materials, including documents and Q&A pairs.

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