An Analysis of Paul's Case

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"Paul's Case" by Willa Cather, a young man named Paul is unhappy with his home and school life. He is happiest when he is at Carnegie Hall, where he works as an usher. When he is not physically at Carnegie Hall, his thoughts remain there causing his school work to suffer. When his father finds out about his problems in school he has Paul banned from Carnegie Hall, taken out of school, and put to work. One day, while on his way to make the company's deposit, Paul decides to take some of the money and go to New York to experience the life he feels he was destined for. Unable to cope with the punishment for taking the money he commits suicide. The central idea in this story is that it takes patience and perseverance to accomplish your dreams, and you should not give up on them. The main character in this story is a tall, thin teenager named Paul. He is very unhappy with his common life and does not want end up working in a factory like his father. He creates stories to make his life seem lavish which results in him not having a close relationship with anyone in his life. To fill that void he chooses to spend most of his time at Carnegie Hall. Paul really "lives" when he is ushering there and constantly dreams of living the life of the performers that he sees. Paul's father is a single parent trying to raise his children in a respectable neighborhood. He is a hard worker and trying to set a good example for his son. His father puts pressure on Paul by constantly referring to a neighbor, whom he feels is a perfect model for his son to follow. The teachers at the school do not understand Paul's behavior. They feel Paul is disrespectful and a nuisance, and they have given up on him. Unlike the teachers, the people at Carnegie Hall have not given up on Paul and see a future for him in the theater industry. The conflict that Paul faces is that he has a life that he feels is unsuited for him and he wants to live more extravagantly. Instead of working towards that dream...
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