Many times the protagonists become the victims of the story and are eventually defeated. This is the case in Joseph Boyden’s Three Day Road. The protagonist, Xavier Bird, is the victim and is eventually defeated by the powers and doings of the people that he encounters during the war, and also by the uncontrollable forces that act upon him during the course of the war. Ultimately, these two factors overpower him and lead to his emotional defeat.
First of all, Xavier is victimized and destroyed by the many different people he encounters during the war. Xavier’s emotions are hurt when he realizes the truth about his love, Lisette, and his best friend, Elijah Whiskeyjack. When Xavier realizes that Lisette was a hired prostitute, paid for by Elijah, he becomes furious and loses his will to live and survive. He says “‘I do not give a shit anymore,’ I say in Cree. ‘ Let the bastards shoot me’” (255). This passage is from when he is caught for deserting the army and sneaking off for two days in order to find Lisette. This shows that Xavier has lost all will to survive, because he has found out about the truth regarding Lisette. He no longer has a reason to keep on going. Before, he had a goal, to see his love, but now he has nothing to look forward to. He does not want to continue living. Also because of this incident, Xavier starts to despise his best friend Elijah. Xavier says “’Bastard’…’Shut up now and go away’ I say, not looking at him” (257). In this passage we see their relationship crumbling, all because of the realization that Lisette is a prostitute. Secondly, Xavier’s culture and his self identity are attacked by Lieutenant Breech, which also contributes to his ultimate emotional defeat. Breech constantly insults Xavier and makes racist remarks on purpose, often saying things like “‘How many canoe lengths did you say they were from you?’ he says, smiling” (196). In this passage, Lieutenant Breech is making fun of Xavier as he reports his kills. Because of...
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