The Apt Pupil

Topics: Anxiety, Dissociative identity disorder Pages: 3 (1021 words) Published: June 28, 2008
"The Apt Pupil" tells the story of thirteen-year-old Todd Bowden, the total all-American kid, and "…an extremely apt pupil." It was not until one day, we find that Todd discovers a nasty secret about his neighbor. We are first introduced to Kurt Dussander under a different name, Mr. Arthur Denker. Mr. Denker would not admit at first that his real name was Kurt Dussander and this showed then he told Todd, "I will tell you this once, boy, and once only. My name is Arthur Denker. It has never been anything else…" Finally, he fesses up to being the real Kurt Dussander. Kurt Dussander was a Nazi during the war, who was a major part of the deaths of Jews. It was from this point on that Todd would begin to get himself in more trouble than he imagined and it started with his grades.

Todd had always been an excellent student in school. In fact, Todd had "Straight A's and B's all the way up the line. If he'd been any better, -straight A's for example-his friends might have begun to think he was weird." Todd even spent countless hours making a scrapbook about the infamous Kurt Dussander. The reader easily sees the amount of interest that Todd has in Dussander, but he slow began to ignore his academics. As his performance slowly declined in school, Todd was finally hit with reality when he received his quarterly progress report. "The boy had passed only English and American History. Every other grade was an F." Dussander's curiosity and ignorance of the situation brought more anger out of Todd. Mr. Edward French, the guidance counselor even wrote a letter to the parents of Todd to notify them of his poor academic performance. Todd feared the day his parents would find out about his grades, and he did everything in his power to see to it that they did not.

After Todd's violent expression of his anger, Dussander made it clear to Todd that their were mixed up in each other and they "…must live in the present, boy, not in the past of ‘I should-have...
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