Sedgewick Bell Analysis

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Hundert is a retired teacher at St. Benedict’s School, telling his story, not “for his own honor” or “in apology for St.Benedict’s School,” (p. 155) but the story of Sedgewick Bell, his student, only in the hope that it will help “another student of history” someday. (p. 155).Hundert is developing over the story in a clear way showed by the situations with Sedgewick and his students.

The narrator’s stated purpose suggests that he is a reflective man who sees himself as an important person in the lives of his students because, as a history teacher, he “battled their indolence with discipline, their boorishness with philosophy, and the arrogance of their stations with the history of great men before them” (p. 155). The narrator believes he played a crucial role in shaping the character of his students. The narrator’s statement “I tell this story not for my own honor, for there is little of that here” (p. 155) suggests that he is humble, because he is
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The senator puts Hundert on the defensive when, during his phone conversation with Hundert, he threatens, “My son has told me a great deal about you, Mr. Hundert. If I were you, I’d remember that” and dismisses Hundert’s suggestion that the situation is “complex” (p. 173). Hundert concludes his description of the interaction by noting, “And thus young Sedgewick Bell and I began an uneasy compact that lasted out his days at St. Benedict’s” (pp. 173–174). The phrase “uneasy compact” indicates that Hundert is intimidated by the senator into accepting the senator and Sedgewick’s “code of morals” (p. 172) in exchange for their silence about Hundert’s manipulation of the “Mr. Julius Caesar” competition. Hundert accepts that he is unable to instill in Sedgewick the “high ideals” he values (p. 163) and that he, himself, “lacked the character” (p. 173) to live by his own “code of morals” (p.

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