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Literature Study GuidesThe Light In The Forest

The Light in the Forest | Study Guide

Conrad Richter

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Course Hero. "The Light in the Forest Study Guide." Course Hero. 27 Sep. 2019. Web. 1 June 2023. <>.

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Course Hero. (2019, September 27). The Light in the Forest Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved June 1, 2023, from

In text

(Course Hero, 2019)



Course Hero. "The Light in the Forest Study Guide." September 27, 2019. Accessed June 1, 2023.


Course Hero, "The Light in the Forest Study Guide," September 27, 2019, accessed June 1, 2023,



Conrad Richter

Year Published





Adventure, Historical Fiction

Perspective and Narrator

The novel The Light in the Forest is written from a third-person omniscient point of view. As the narrative progresses, its chapters offer the perspective of different characters, including True Son, Del Hardy, and Mr. and Mrs. Butler. However, most chapters are narrated from True Son's perspective.


The novel The Light in the Forest is written in the past tense.

About the Title

The forest is a place with deep meaning to True Son, the protagonist of The Light in the Forest. He is taken away from his forest home and sent to live with his white biological family. After a childhood in the woods, he finds the family's house as oppressive as a prison. Eventually he returns to the forest, but his homecoming requires difficult decisions.

The novel's epigraph is a quotation from English poet William Wordsworth (1770–1850) describing a young boy who sees light through a prison-house closing around him as he grows older. True Son eventually learns to see the light in the forest as well when he decides to follow the counsel of his inner voice. The light comes to represent the new wisdom and perspective he achieves when he comes of age.


This study guide for Conrad Richter's The Light in the Forest offers 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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