Stage 2 English Communications

Topics: Border, Change, Border control Pages: 3 (1018 words) Published: June 13, 2012
“You see the real question is: can people change?” How does Border Crossing answer this question? Change is something that is common for most individuals, whether it presents a positive or a negative outcome. Pat Barker’s text Border Crossing deals with the idea of people changing and is shown by her use of different characters, the representation of settings and her central idea of crossing borders. All of these aspects in Barker’s narrative make the reader look back at their own understanding of change, to help understand whether change occurs in the text Border Crossing. Pat Barker’s use of characterisation in the text Border Crossing explores that people can change, or at least have the potential to change. An example of a character that changes in a positive manner is Tom Seymour, a psychologist who specialises in youth violence. At first Tom is presented as an empty shell, flawed and imperfect, with Barker putting emphasis on his deteriorating marriage and “his not infrequent failures” of having a child. Tom starts to change when he unexpectedly deals with Danny Miller, the protagonist of the text. As Tom helps Danny come to terms with his dark past and brutal murder of Lizzie Parks, Tom rebuilds his life by mutually ending his marriage with his partner Lauren that “didn’t work” and builds a relationship between his colleague, Martha Pitt. Tom therefore changes in the way that he moves on from his unstable and depressing past to a better a more romantic life with Martha. Alternatively, Barker positions Danny as the only character that has the potential to change. Danny’s character in the text is always blurred and obscure, making it difficult for the reader to understand what his motives are in any situation. Danny is never shown as a full character as he is always cast in the shadows of his past. This may suggest that Danny cannot be trusted, or to signify that he is a shady character. Conversely, in the final chapter “unmistakably, was Danny,” (page 278),...
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