Boys and Girls Character Analysis

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The story, “Boys and Girls”, by Alice Munro illustrates the narrator and protagonist character, a nameless little girl, as a round character, with traits such as her endurable strength against the hardships and inequality in her own society. Thus, we are shown her firm views toward life, her rather contrasting views toward her own family members, and the significance of her hopes and dreams. Unlike other young girls, Munro’s protagonist had rather obstinate views toward life. Having grown up in a harsh environment of a slaughter farm, the young girl became accustomed with this atmosphere and even found it to be “reassuringly seasonal”. The girl in her youth had become familiarized with the dominating male gender surrounding her, thus she adopted “tomboyish” characteristics and beliefs leading to her detesting the female role. However, as the young child grew older and turned eleven she “no longer felt safe.” It began to dawn on her that “a girl was not, as [she] had supposed, simply what [she] was; it was what [she] had become…” It was becoming clear that even her physical appearance was developing and that not even “all [her] strength” could beat her younger brother Laird in a fight anymore. Reacting in the complete opposite manner of what her grandmother instructed, she wished to “keep [herself] free” from being a girl and acting like a lady. Alongside the girl’s beliefs toward the difference in gender, she also felt extremely resentful toward her mother, whom had already submitted to the stereotypical life of a woman. The young girl had believed that her mother could not be “trusted”, although “she was kinder than [her] father…but you could not depend on her…” She saw her mother as the “enemy.” On the other hand, the young girl attained a great deal of respect for her father; she felt a strong bond toward him. While she willingly helped him complete masculine chores around the house, we learn that she wanted to be like him, which is further proven when he...
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