The Godfather | Study Guide

Mario Puzo

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Mario Puzo

Year Published






Perspective and Narrator

The Godfather is narrated by a third-person omniscient narrator. By using this technique, the author is able to provide the perspective of many characters in relation to the events happening in the novel.


The Godfather is told in the past tense.

About the Title

The title The Godfather refers to the name given to the head of a Sicilian or Italian crime family. This name suggests the immense power of such a crime leader, who can be viewed as a type of god within the criminal world. Also, the term godfather has a religious meaning. A person who is a godfather sponsors a child at baptism and is responsible for making sure the child follows the Christian faith. In one sense, the criminals in the novel invert this meaning. A criminal godfather often gets a person involved in illegal activities, thereby leading him into a life of sin.


This study guide and infographic for Mario Puzo's The Godfather 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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