Atonement Ethics

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Atonement is to compensate, amend or satisfy a wrong. Briony is the one responsible for the wrong act that needs atoning. A lot was running through this thirteen year old mind before setting out with this act. Firstly, she witnessed what seemed to her as sexual apprehension between her sister, Cecilia, and Robbie at a water fountain outside her window. After seeing her sister stripped down to her underwear, she misunderstood this as aggression on Robbie's part. As a natural human being, one feels somewhat duty-bound to try and look out and protect for her family, especially sisters. After this had her thinking about what was happening and how to reason it. The letter that she read from Robbie using a sex-crazed, demeaning language for her sister proved that she was right and Robbie was a sex maniac. Growing up like Briony around close family all her life makes it impossible to let these events slide and have no consideration for her sister. The next incident that motivated her into this unjust act is stumbling upon a guy in a tuxedo raping her close cousin, Lola. Briony started to feel close to Lola, they both had a close moment together before this happened; caring for Lola's safety and protection was also a big part of her motivation of the act. Briony experienced her first crush on Robbie; this can draw out severe jealousy upon her sister after witnessing their meetings together. Being jealous, pushed her motives even more to send him over to the cops and jail. Robbie was her first crush and she had not experienced any of these thoughts with another man before. Briony had no experience, which can also be said differently, she was too young to know how to deal with her emotions and rejection. She was rejected by him when she expressed her love for him driving her to be further motivated towards sending him off away. Her motivation towards sending him to jail seemed the obvious thing to do but it was based upon her wrong instincts and judgments.

The act of...
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