Dead Poets Society Analysis

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Yoni Weiss
Ms. Wilkie
4th Period
30 November 2012
Seize the Character

Todd Anderson
New transfer student
“Todd Anderson squirmed in his seat at the mention of transfer student.” (Pg. 4)
“‘My brother went here.’ Neil shook his head. ‘Oh, so you’re THAT Anderson.’”
(Pg. 12)
Did not wear a blazer; scared of new school
“Sixteen-year-old Todd Anderson, one of the few students not wearing the school blazer, hesitated as the boys around him rose to their feet.” (Pg. 3) Has to fill his brother’s “big” shoes
“Ah, Mr. Anderson. You have some big shoes to fill, young man. Your brother was one of our best.’” (Pg. 7) Stiff
“‘Heard you got the new boy. Hear he’s a stiff.’” (Pg. 13) 5. Small voice; shy
“‘I… would… prefer… rowing… sir,’ Todd said, his voice barely audible.”
(Pg. 11)
“‘Todd, if you’re gonna make it around here you’ve got to speak up.’” (Pg. 18) Needed better grades to get into Welton
“‘My parents wanted me to go here all along but my grades weren’t good enough.’”
(Pg. 12)
Very emotional
“As the other boys stared at him, Todd fought back tears.” (Pg. 12) Did not belong
“He took out a framed photo of his mother and father with their arms affectionately around an older boy who appeared to be Todd’s famous brother, Jeffery. Neil looked at the photo and noticed that Todd was slightly apart from the family group.”

(Pg. 18)
Self-esteem issues, very self conscious
“‘A penny for your thoughts?’ Neil laughed… ‘Not even worth that much,’ Todd said.” (Pg. 30) Studied alone
“‘Want to come to the study group?’ Neil asked. ‘Thanks but… I better do history.’”
(Pg. 30)
Did not like reading
“Todd looked down. ‘I don’t want to read’” (Pg. 50) Dead Poets Society member
(Chpt. 7)

Time Keeper
“‘Todd Anderson, because he prefers not to read, will be keeping minutes of the meetings.’” (Pg. 53) Breaks out of his shell, more self-confident
“Todd took a deep breath and for the first time he smiled with an air of confidence.”
(Pg. 76)
Finds his voice with Mr. Keating’s help
“Keating paused, then suddenly lunged fiercely toward Todd. ‘Good, God, boy, yell!’ he shouted. ‘Yawp!’ Todd said in a frightened voice. ‘Again! Louder!’ Keating shouted. ‘YAWP!’ ‘LOUDER!’ ‘AAAHHHHHHH’” (Pg. 74) Becomes silly and funny

“Todd, who was obviously relieved from his success of the day, playfully put the lampshade on his own head.” (Pg. 77) His parents don’t love him and don’t get him a good gift for his birthday
“‘You know what Dad called me when I was growing up? Five ninety-eight… He told me that was all I’d ever be worth…” (Pg. 84)
“‘This is your desk set,’ Neil said… ‘They gave me the exact same thing as last year!’ Todd cried.” (Pg. 83) Eats with non-dominant hand
“‘Misters Meeks and Overstreet and Anderson… why are you eating with your left hands?’ Knox spoke for the group. ‘We thought it would be good to break old habits, sir,’ he explained.” (Pg. 119)

Despises Mr. Perry and the way he treats Neil
“‘Next time I see Neil’s father I’m going to smash him’” (Pg. 143) Writes a poem
“Now who else wants to read?’ ‘I have something,’ Todd said.” (Pg. 145) Refuses to sign paper condemning Mr. Keating
“Todd shook his head, ‘No. I won’t sign it.’” (Pg. 161) Respects Mr. Keating
“‘Oh Captain! My Captain!’ Todd called out” (Pg. 165)

In my personal opinion, Todd Anderson changes the most out of all the characters in Dead Poets Society by N.H. Kleinbaum. In the beginning of the book, Todd is awkwardly quiet and extremely shy. He does not talk to the other boys and declines to join the study group set up by the future Dead Poets. Mr. Keating, the new English teacher, notices how shy Todd is and points it out various times in class. One day in class, Mr. Keating tells the boys they must write an original poem. When the class ends and everyone starts to leave, Mr. Keating tells Todd that he knows the assignment will be hard for him, but it will be a good challenge. One day, Todd...
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