A literary analysis of jeffersons character in a lesson before dying

Because of his court-appointed attorney's racist remark, he sees himself as a beast — not worthy of the dignity and respect due all human beings. It is only by acknowledging his kinship with Jefferson and re-establishing his relationship with the black community that he finally achieves his freedom.

In order to help Jefferson "stand," Grant must first come to terms with his own inner demons, which threaten to make him an emotional cripple like his predecessor, Matthew Antoine.

He is insensitive and inconsiderate, as Vivian points out he doesn't consider the impact of his actions on othersand he is immature he doesn't stop to think of the pain that his actions could cause. His association with Bear and Brother, in fact, resulted in the circumstances that led to his trial.

A Lesson Before Dying: Theme Analysis

Note that he still refers to Miss Emma as his "nannan," suggesting his naivete and childlike innocence. This raises the question: In a interview, Gaines notes that, according to Booker T. He is not prepared for the responsibilities of leadership. Also note that he writes in his diary, "Man walks on two feet; pigs on four" after Grant has convinced him that the racial myth stating that his life is worthless is absolutely wrong: He knows his Bible.

Instead, he internalizes his rage and vents his pain and frustration on his students. Unlike Miss Emma, he refuses to challenge the system that keeps him in a state of mental slavery.

The design of the novel demands that these two touch each other at a very deep level, and that can happen convincingly only if it becomes evident that the two men share some quality that will permit that touching to occur.

Community is not perfect, but it is part of human experience.

A Lesson Before Dying

They left the plantation at least temporarilychanged their names assuming new identitiesand learned to read and write. He wants freedom without responsibility. The jurors are not even asked to consider the legality of the situation. Because he is black in a racist society, the law will not help Jefferson.

Unlike Jefferson, Grant has had numerous opportunities to leave Bayonne and change his life, but he has decided to stay and teach at the plantation school, not because he is a dedicated teacher who cares about his students, but because he feels that as a black man living in a racist white world, he has little or no control over his life.

Both were born not long after emancipation, and both have been servants in the homes of white people.

A Lesson Before Dying

He is naive, passive, and easily influenced. He was raised by Miss Emma and Mr. Without Miss Emma or Tante Lou, it seems natural to conclude that Grant would have stagnated in his despair and spent his life feeling angry and irritable. Download-Theses Mercredi 10 juin Grant Wiggins and Jefferson are the novel's dual protagonists.

A Lesson before Dying Characters

Their individual survivals depend on their mutual support. Although it is Jefferson's story, it is narrated by Grant, with the exception of Chapter 29, in which Jefferson is finally able to tell his story in his own voice, through his diary. Instant downloads of all LitChart PDFs (including A Lesson Before Dying).

LitCharts Teacher Editions.

Analysis of “A Lesson Before Dying” by Ernest Gaines: Themes of Women and Community

Teach your students to analyze literature like LitCharts does. Detailed explanations, analysis, and citation info for every important quote on LitCharts. The original text plus a side-by-side. The Literary Merit of A Lesson Before Dying - The Literary Merit of A Lesson Before Dying Ernest Gaines was born during the middle of the Great Depression on January 15, A Lesson Before Dying is a novel by Ernest J.

Gaines that was first published in Character List Bookmark this page Manage My Reading List Jefferson A twenty-one-year-old uneducated black field worker condemned to die after being innocently involved in an armed robbery and shooting.

A Lesson Before Dying: Theme Analysis A literary analysis of jeffersons character in a lesson before dying
Rated 5/5 based on 73 review
A Lesson Before Dying Characters from LitCharts | The creators of SparkNotes