When he and Barbara have a cigarette, Stephen says that he feels “…a kind of soaring sensation…as if I’m no longer bound by the rules and restrictions of childhood” Explore the ways Frayn presents Stephen’s changing understanding of the adult world.
At first Frayn shows Stephen of finding it difficult that to believe that the adults that are around him were once children too. This is naïve of Stephen. He sees his brother going through the process of growing up but he does not realise that he is soon going to be doing the same thing. We see Stephen as having no time for girls and he despises their girly ways. Stephen has very childish views on girls for example him finding that Barbara makes him squirm at her unpleasant girlishness finds himself entranced by “the fine golden hairs on the brown skin of her legs” when he is first alone with Barbara. When it comes to the situation with the cigarette, Stephen imagines that he has started to approach adulthood. He is pretending to be grown up because when in front of Barbara he is keen not to look immature. The fact that he has shared an intimate moment with Barbara makes him consider himself to be on the brink of growing up and he feels that he is able to leave behind the fantasy games that he has played with Keith and embark on new and much more mysterious adult mysteries. He has also managed to finally leave behind the silly and childish view of “germs”. Then in the other meeting that he has with Barbara, Stephen “manages not to flinch” and he even politely says that the kiss is “Quite nice”. He has managed to overcome his sense of apprehension that he feels when he is with Barbara. The main reason of the character Barbara Berrill is to demonstrate the difference in the two worlds, which is by helping Stephen in his evolution from childhood to adulthood. Whereas the old Stefan is taken back into his childhood through memory and imagination, the young Stephen is assisted by Barbara Berrill. It is through her...
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