Paul Street Boys

Topics: Gang, Sacrifice, Character Pages: 2 (460 words) Published: April 30, 2006
In the book Paul Street Boys one of the main characters, Nemecsek, who is a member of the Paul Street gang, could definitely be considered a Christ-figure, despite his status as an underdog. A Christ figure is a literary device, a particular way of shaping an important character in a novel. He (or she) may not match in every instance to the biblical image of Jesus, but bears enough of the characteristics to suggest the relationship. They go through suffering and in the end sacrifice themselves for people, including those who caused them the misery. They are willing to sacrifice everything they have for the benefit of others. Nemecsek remains unflinchingly loyal to his beloved leader Boka and he sacrifices himself in battle for the well-being of the Paul Street Boys; this self-sacrifice ultimately leads to his own death. Nemecsek endured Christ-like hardship throughout his short lived membership in the Paul Street gang. He constantly tolerated the cruelty that the other members gave him and

their decision to keep his name written in small letters in the beginning of the novel. Just like Christ he served those around him by always running errands for the gang without complaining. Also, Nemecsek stepped up when no one else would. When the red shirts captured the Paul Street Boys flag, Nemecsek went to the other gang's territory and stole it back; this showed his loyalty to the gang and its members. While the other boys are scared about the battle against the red shirts later on in the book, Nemecsek emerges as the only character willing to sacrifice himself for the better of the group. Nemecsek gets pneumonia while spying upon the enemy, and dies the death of a hero in the service of his own team. His death represents heroism and sacrifice, yet, at the same time, the novel ends on an upsetting note; his heroism proves ultimately pointless, as the grund is being sold to a building contractor. Although the sacrifice might seem pointless, it wasn't, Nemecsek's...
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