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"Marlowe's biographers often portray him as a dangerously over"“ambitious individual. Explore ways this aspect of Marlowe's personality is reflected in 'Dr. Faustus.' " Christopher Marlowe lived during the Renaissance period in 16th century England. Although this was a time of change, the Elizabethans still had fixed moral values. 'The Chain of Being,' a concept inherited from the Middle Ages, can be described as a hierarchy of society, with the monarch at the top and the lowliest peasants at the bottom. Below people were animals, plants and rocks. During the Elizabethan era, 'dangerous ambition' would probably involve trying to break the 'Chain of Being' and striving to increase one's social status. It was believed to be necessary to accept one's place in the chain, as to disrupt it and overcome the set order of society could mean chaos would follow. Faustus was an exceedingly ambitious man, even in relation to what is considered to be ambitious by people in today's society. In the prologue, The Chorus sums up Faustus' background and early life, emphasizing his ordinary background and academic success. It seems that Faustus' intellect made him become proud and this fired up his ambition. When Marlowe presents Faustus in scene 1, Faustus methodically shuns great authors and classically intellectual subjects, such as medicine and law because they hold little attraction to him, line 11 'A greater subject fitteth Faustus' wit.' The above quote shows how Faustus elevates himself above taking up an intellectual pursuit that would be highly esteemed by the Elizabethans. Another sign that Faustus holds himself in high regard is that he refers to himself in the third person, also shown in the above quote. Faustus' discusses beliefs that he will no longer hold and describes what he wants to achieve in his opening soliloquy. Faustus may be seen as blasphemous in the opening speech, implying that he would only be a doctor if he could be equal to God, lines24-6 'Couldst thou make men live eternally Or, being dead raise them to life again, Then this profession were to be esteemed.' This is made more obvious when Faustus lastly says, line 62 'A sound magician is a mighty god.' Marlowe portrays Faustus as being over-ambitious by his turning to magic, which is a much more sinister and much less conventional pursuit than others that he had been discussing previously. Faustus hopes that magic will make him omnipotent and god-like. There is little evidence to suggest that Marlowe himself wanted power over others, but his rise in society from a shoemaker's son to a scholar at Cambridge University and later, a spy, was extremely rare at the time. Marlowe did not lead a normal Elizabethan life; in fact, one could say that it was similar to fiction. The over-ambitious part of Marlowe's personality is reflected in Faustus because it seems Marlowe must have wanted success in his life, and to over-reach his set path in life. It becomes clearer as the play continues that Faustus is a dangerously ambitious person when in scene 3 he discusses the deal with a devil, Mephastophilis, concerning the selling of his soul to the Devil in return for earthly power. When Faustus makes the contract, it seems as if he is not thinking ahead as his attitude is carefree. He possibly does not believe in Hell, or that he has a soul, or about the reality of the bargain. His attitude at this point can be summed up by the following phrase Scene 4, lines 103-4, 'If I had as many souls as there be stars, I'd give them all for Mephastophilis.' Faustus' ambition for power and lack of foresight are what doom him later on in play. Arguably, ambition can be said to have caused the downfall of Marlowe himself. His violent murder in a London tavern in 1593 was mysterious and historians often question possible motives for killing Marlowe; his drive to succeed may have made other people envious and resentful. In 'Dr. Faustus', other characters are probably envious of Faustus too. In one of the comic scenes, scene 6, we learn that Robin and Rafe have stolen one of Faustus' books and plan to use it to seduce a woman. They must have been jealous of Faustus' power and his magical aptitude; however it is not the case that he is murdered by these characters later on in the play. Faustus is ambitious and enjoys his newfound power until the end of the play, despite being warned of the reality of his empty bargain by the Old Man and by the Good Angel throughout the play. The Old Man says in scene 12 lines 107-9, 'Ambitious fiends, see how the heavens smiles At your repulse, and laughs your state to scorn. Hence hell, for hence I fly unto God.' This moment foreshadows Faustus' lines at the end of the play, where, horrified, he must face the Devil and Hell. Faustus' ambition makes him a more human character despite him his selling his soul to the Devil, which may make him more difficult for the audience to relate to because of the extraordinary situation. His intellect sometimes creates doubts in his mind about the bargain that he has made, but his ambition overrides his conscience until the very end. This is shown by the Good and Evil Angels, who appear in scenes 1 and 5. They are binary opposites and in my view are present to put another side to Faustus' personality "“ a conscience. The Good Angel tries to motivate Faustus to repent by concentrating on God's anger. However the Evil Angel contradicts the Good Angel, Scene 5 lines 253-6 'EVIL ANGEL: Too late. GOOD ANGEL: Never too late, if Faustus can repent. EVIL ANGEL: If thou repent, devils shall tear thee in pieces. GOOD ANGEL: Repent, and they shall never rase thy skin.' The Good and Evil Angels' stichomythic dialogue is not too realistic and shows how torn Faustus is between the two sides. He is easily swayed and believes the angel that speaks last, but it is interesting to bear in mind that despite the warnings, his ambition stays with him to the end and leads to his downfall. Marlowe portrays Faustus' ambition as dangerous; it was the cause of his demise. Perhaps Marlowe used the theme of over-ambition as a warning to the audience, who would be likely to be wary of ambition - it was looked down on as a negative personality trait in Christian England. Ideas around at the time such as 'The Chain of Being' reinforced religious opinion into people's everyday lives and morality plays popular from the early 1400s to the 1580s were used to strengthen people's Christian principles, as 'Dr. Faustus' also does by discouraging ambition. Marlowe reflects ambition in the character of Faustus to deter the audience from being ambitious, and over-reaching their place in the 'Chain of Being'. However, if Marlowe chose to be 'dangerously over-ambitious' and regarded himself as this, it is likely that he may have written 'Dr. Faustus' differently, not viewing ambition in such a negative way. Whatever Marlowe's view on ambition was, it is not made clear in the play, through Faustus or other characters. Certain aspects of his personality are indeed reflected in Faustus, which make reading the play and exploring Faustus as a character even more intriguing.
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"Marlowe's biographers often portray him as a dangerously over–ambitious individual. Explore ways this aspect of Marlowe's personality is reflected in 'Dr. Faustus.' " Christopher Marlowe lived during the Renaissance period in 16th century England. Although this was a time of change, the Elizabethans still had fixed moral values. 'The Chain of Being,' a concept inherited from the Middle Ages, can be described as a hierarchy of society, with the monarch at the top and the lowliest peasants at the bottom. Below people were animals, plants and rocks. During the Elizabethan era, 'dangerous ambition' would probably involve trying to break...

Marlowe reflects ambition in the character of Faustus to deter the audience from being ambitious, and over-reaching their place in the 'Chain of Being'. However, if Marlowe chose to be 'dangerously over-ambitious' and regarded himself as this, it is likely that he may have written 'Dr. Faustus' differently, not viewing ambition in such a negative way. Whatever Marlowe's view on ambition was, it is not made clear in the play, through Faustus or other characters. Certain aspects of his personality are indeed reflected in Faustus, which make reading the play and exploring Faustus as a character even more intriguing.

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Kindergarteners should not have homework;... Kindergarteners should not have homework; first graders should not have homework; fifth grade"¦maybe. In this fast-paced, super-information age, children are being given more and more homework at a younger and younger age. I imagine, sometime in the near future, pre-school students will bring home some sort of "Mommy, you have to help me with this or I'll get a bad grade", homework. Not to say that it isn't good, or isn't productive, but I say that it isn't a good idea to give early grammar school students more than they can complete in class. First of all, school already takes up around seven hours of their day, seven hours per day learning grammar and general education; do they need an extra hour of work every day? Secondly, nowadays there are many single working-parent families and families in which both parents hold full time jobs; they may not have the time, ability, or willpower left after working, making meals, keeping house, and giving baths, to help their children with homework. Also, when children get out of school they want to play with their friends, pets, Lego's, and do the things children like to do, they don't want to go home and do more schoolwork, nor should they have to. A child is only a child once, and not for very long, let him play. A school is an institution for learning, so I say let our kids learn in school. Let them learn to read and write, to add and subtract, to sit and listen. Seven hours a day, five days a week is a very sufficient amount of time to teach and learn these things, if it wasn't, I'm sure we would extend the school day, or make our children attend kindergarten at three years old. I never had homework until I was in fifth grade. When I was a child we weren't handed such "responsibilities," those were adult things and we were kids. Sure, we had to get on the right school bus, but the teacher would even walk us there until the second month of the school year. Responsibility was something I learned at home, along with family values, religious studies, and why stacking the firewood under the shelter was so important. Let our kids learn basic education at the school, let them not be weighted with the responsibility of homework, let them be kids awhile, and not rush them to learn more than is adequate; seven hours adequate. Homemaking is more time consuming than any full-time job. The work begins first thing in the morning, and ends with the closing of eyes in the night, unless the baby wakes, or a child is sick and sleepless. My wife Linda, now a homemaker, used to be a single working parent of two boys. She would get up with them in the morning, serve breakfast, give baths, see them off to school, and clean up the meal dishes all before she went to work. Upon leaving work Linda would pick the boys up from day-care, make dinner, do laundry and other housekeeping necessities leaving little or no time to get the kids' homework done for the day. Some parents have plenty of time to help their kids with homework, but this leaves the rest of kids looking like bad students, or parents feeling like bad parents because they couldn't keep up. I have complete faith that our school system is able to educate our young children just as well without burdening the parents with homework. Last year, when my sons got home from school, they would change into their play clothes, do their chores, and do their homework just in time to have an hour left to play with their friends before dark. This year I am letting them do their homework just before bed, but still, I would rather they had no homework at all until they're at an age when they are responsible and able to do it with little assistance. Kids today have too much responsibility and worry put on them by this "go-go"," be-the-best" society. Let the boy relax, or get hyper, let him dig for fishing worms, or play swords with sticks. Do not rush him to grow up or take on duties that are unfit for a free spirit, let him put on his cowboy boots and six-shooter, don't give him a pencil and more schoolwork after school, let him draw. If I had a chance to speak with the superintendent I'm sure he/she would say it is proven that children who do homework learn quicker. Maybe the teacher would suggest that introducing homework at a younger age prepares the student for later schooling when much homework will be assigned. The upper middle-class parent would suggest that the single mom should get a tutor. Of course children who do homework learn quicker, but do the goals of the learning institution supercede the goals of the family institution. Is it more important for a child to be stuffed with fact and theory than to be free from stress in his younger years? I understand the effort to increase the productiveness of school, but I question whether the motive is community healthy or not. Homework is just what it is, work done at home. It does not matter when it is introduced it will always carry the name "work," and the student will either do it or not. Some things are just the way they are, you could have given me a million pages of homework before high school and maybeI would have completed them, but that wouldn't have made me any more likely to get my algebra homework in on time. I firmly believed in tutors, so my wife set one up for our son Kevin who was in kindergarten at the time. The teacher said "Kevin is having trouble reading". I guess it's been a long time since I first entered school, I remember Mrs. Earl, my kindergarten teacher, she taught me the ABC's reading was learned in later grades. Anyhow, we had secured a tutor for Kevin and I could not believe what the tutor did, of all the nerve, that tutor gave Kevin even more homework than the school did. Mom and dad are the tutors now. In this flourishing information age, with accelerated advancement of civilization and knowledge, children are given more responsibility and expected to learn quicker than ever before. School is the place we need to teach our kids, if there's not enough time in class save it for tomorrow. The parents need to be parents, not after school teachers. There are many things other than math and school studies that children need to learn from their parents. I believe if we rush these children to gain knowledge, take on responsibility, and leave them no time to be a child, we take away from them the very thing that makes them children"¦freedom, freedom from stress and worries. Surely a good education is very, very important, so is a happy child. Really think about it, would you rather have a smart, educated, super-civilized child; or a free and happy one? I prefer the thought of a laughing, playing, free spirited child. Let them wait till fourth or fifth grade to start having to carry a backpack to and from school.   

Kindergarteners should not have homework; first graders should not have homework; fifth grade…maybe. In this fast-paced, super-information age, children are being given more and more homework at a younger and younger age. I imagine, sometime in the near future, pre-school students will bring home some sort of "Mommy, you...

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Mordecai Richler's The Apprenticeship of... Mordecai Richler's The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz certainly provides a stark contrast to F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby. While Fitzgerald epitomizes descriptive writing techniques, Richler is far more reserved and subtle in terms of description when juxtaposed. However, both writers are able to successfully reveal the precarious journey of, essentially, the same character. Richler's Duddy Kravitz and Fitzgerald's Jay Gatsby, exemplifies the accomplishments that result from pursuing a dream. Kravitz obediently follows his grandfather's advice: "A man without land is nobody" Richler, 49. Meanwhile, Gatsby follows his heart and pursues Daisy Buchanans' unrequited love. While there are parallactic views on whether each character's actions are inspiring or denouncing, the similarities between the two are blatantly obvious. The psychological structure of Kravitz essentially parallels that of Gatsby because both rise to prominence from meager existence, both attempt to conceal their inauspicious past, both pursue their goals through questionable means, and both base their entire existence on a dream which ultimately proves to be their downfall. A common past may partially be responsible for the close psychological similarities between Kravitz and Gatsby. During their initial portion of life, both characters were confronted with similar problems. Due to their impoverished state, both characters appeared bound to a lifetime of mediocrity. As Richler describes, "Where Duddy Kravitz sprung from the boys grew up dirty and sad, spiky also, like grass beside the railroad tracks." 45. Kravitz's background is further exposed when he claims, "He's a hack and he picks up extra money pimping. My father's a pimp"¦That ought to be good for a laugh. My old man's a lousy pimp." 105. Certainly, Kravitz was never brought up under ideal conditions, and neither was Gatsby, who encounters much of the same problems. "For over a year he had been beating his way along the south shore of Lake Superior as a clam-digger and a salmon fisher or in any other capacity that brought him food and bed." Fitzgerald, 95. Fitzgerald further reinforces this fact, "A young major just out of the army and covered with medals he got in the war. He was so hard up he had to keep wearing his uniform because he couldn't buy some regular clothes"¦Start him! I made him...I raised him out of nothing, right out of the gutter." 162. Undoubtedly, both characters begin their journeys with similar challenges. While Kravitz desperately attempts to avoid a lifetime of "nothingness," Gatsby struggles to overcome his status as a "poor boy, who can't marry rich girls." In essence, poverty is the major contributing factor responsible for the irrepressible desire exemplified by Kravitz and Gatsby. Thus, it is vital that each character experience it. Since Kravitz and Gatsby are exposed to the same challenges during their childhood years, both are able to develop similar psychological characters. Thus, the resounding desire possessed by each as a result of poverty, proves that Kravitz and Gatsby possess the same psychological mindset. Kravitz and Gatsby have essentially created a mythological past to obscure their inauspicious backgrounds. Both characters demonstrate an overwhelming sense of arrogance, which partially forces them to conceal their backgrounds. Kravitz has created a fictional brother, who had, Run away to the States at fifteen, lied about his age, joined the air force, and sunk three Jap battleships in the Pacific. They were going to make a movie about his life, maybe. After the war Bradley rescued an Arizona millionaire's beautiful daughter from drowning, married her, and bought a ranch. Richler, 12. Richler later reveals the falsehood of this statement: "Familiar with all of Bradley's exploits the boys also suspected that he was a fictional character, but nobody dared accuse Duddy of lying." 12. In addition to creating a fictional past, Kravitz also greatly exaggerates his position in life. "He told her about his brother Bradley and that the Boy Wonder, an intimate of his father's was willing to back him in any line he chose." Richler, 89. Much like Kravitz, Gatsby also creates a mythological past to conceal his mysterious background. I am the son of some wealthy people in the Middle West-all dead now. I was brought up in America but educated at Oxford, because all my ancestors have been educated there for many years. It is a family tradition. My family all died and I came into a good deal of money. After that I lived like a young Raja in all the capitals of Europe- Paris, Venice, Rome- collecting jewels, chiefly rubies, hunting big game, painting a little, things for myself only, and trying to forget something very sad that had happened to me long ago." Fitzgerald, 64. Partially fueled by their arrogance, both characters obscure their past in order to satisfy their conscience. As a result, it can be concluded that Kravitz and Gatsby hold the same vision of themselves. Both are unwilling, or unable to accept their past, and thus, feel obligated and entirely justified to create a self-molded image of themselves. Kravitz chooses to hide his background among the other boys at St Agathe, while Gatsby creates his past in order to rid himself of his previous status. Thus, because both characters create a mythological past, whose creation is fueled by similar factors, Kravitz and Gatsby share identical psychological characters. Kravitz and Gatsby use highly questionable, and at times, immoral means to obtain their goals. Kravitz's struggle to avoid "nothingness," and Gatsby's hunt for the illusive "green light" compels them to perform questionable actions throughout their journeys. Kravitz was willing to lie, cheat, and swindle those closest to him. Yvette claims: I've seen you do lots of dishonest things, Duddy but never in my life did I expect you to cheat a boy like Virgil"¦I never thought you were such a bastard"¦Do you mean to say that knowing how grateful he'd be for a job-any job- you managed to swindle him out of his thousand dollars? Oh, Duddy. Richler, 253. Kravitz believes he is entirely justified in doing such things. It's their fault, he thought, they wouldn't help me, they're forcing me into it. Pushing me, he thought, and he went into Virgil's room. The check book wasn't even hidden"¦He forged the signature by holding the cheques and a letter Virgil had signed up to the window and tracing slowly"¦I'll wait for an hour, he thought, well three-quarters anyway, and if they show up before then I'll tear up the cheque. If not-Well, they shouldn't leave me alone for that long. Not in my desperate condition. Richler, 364. Kravitz's philosophy to place his ambitions above all else is essentially equal to Gatsby's belief of the "green light." Likewise, he uses dishonest schemes to achieve his wealth. She's not leaving me! Certainly not for a common swindler who'd have to steal the ring he put on her finger"¦Who are you anyhow? You're one of that bunch that hangs around Meyer Wolfshiem- that much I happen to know. I've made a little investigation into your affairs- and I'll carry it further tomorrow"¦I found out what your "drug stores" were, He and this Wolfshiem bought up a lot of side-street drug stores here and in Chicago and sold grain alcohol over the counter. That's one of his little stunts. I picked him for a bootlegger the first time I saw him, and I wasn't too far off. Fitzgerald, 127. Gatsby does whatever is necessary in order to attain his love for Daisy. His extra marital relationship with her signifies to what extent he is willing to reach. Gatsby does not realize, nor does he care, about the eventual repercussions of such relationship, much like Kravitz's disrespectful relationship with of Yvette and Virgil. Both Kravitz and Gatsby use dishonest and shortsighted means to achieve their goals. In addition, both are unable to realize the moral limits of attaining such goals. Therefore, Kravitz and Gatsby's inability to realize the moral limits of pursuing their goals clearly reveals the psychological parallels of each character. The uncontrollable desire exemplified by Kravitz and Gatsby ultimately proves to be their downfall. Both fail to realize the importance of the things around them, and thus are unable to clearly differentiate between good and evil. Their uncontrollable desire has blinded them. Kravitz is unable to evaluate the seriousness of the statement: "A man without land is nobody" Richler, 49. Thus, he needlessly pursues a goal that is hypothetically preposterous. In the end, Kravitz is unable to distinguish good from evil, allies from foes. When Dingleman offers a proposal, "It's going to cost you a fortune to develop this land"¦You're going to need lots of money, Duddy. A fortune"¦Alone, you'll never raise the money you need. With my help we could turn this into a model resort town in five years." Richler, 371. Kravitz is unable to see the seriousness in Dingleman. In addition, he also fails to realize the importance of Yvette and Virgil's friendship. In the end, Kravitz looses his friendships, but most importantly, he looses Simcha's faith. "I can see what you have planned for me, Duddel. You'll be good to me. You'd give me everything I wanted. And that would settle your conscience when you went out to swindle others." Richler, 373. Therefore, Kravitz can be considered a failure because he is unable to control his overwhelming desire to avoid "nothingness." Gatsby, however, suffers a more tragic ending. Much like Kravitz, Gatsby based his entire existence on fulfilling his dream. He became infatuated by what he lacked, instead of what he possessed. This is evident when he finally gained his vast amounts of fortunes he so desired, yet, he still feels unfulfilled without Daisy. Thus, as Nick Carraway, the narrator of The Great Gatsby puts it, He had come along way to this blue lawn, and his dream must have seemed so close that he could hardly fail to grasp it. He did not know that it was already behind him, somewhere back in that vast obscurity beyond the city, where the dark fields of the republic rolled on under the night. Fitzgerald, 171. Thus, Gatsby is unable to realize his accomplishments because the idea of continually pursuing his dream has essentially blinded him from reality. Therein lays the psychological parallel between Kravitz and Gatsby. Both base their entire existence on pursuing a dream, and it is the very essence-the desire that they possess, which eventually isolates them from reality. Kravitz is unable to realize the importance of Yvette and Virgil, much like Gatsby has failed to bask in his own glory. Both have envisioned a "perfect" life, but yet, lose what they have achieved. Thus, Kravitz and Gatsby's parallel philosophy of placing dreams above all else proves to be their downfall, but more importantly, demonstrates their similar values and morals. The rise from meagre existence, the creation of a mythological past, the pursuing of a dream through questionable means, and basing an entire existence on a dream are all similar virtues possessed by Duddy Kravitz and Jay Gatsby. Thus, Kravitz and Gatsby can be considered the same characters on the same overall journey. However, there is an extreme sense of irony when observing Kravitz and Gatsby. Kravitz desires wealth, land, and social status, while failing to realize Yvette's love for him. He is surrounded by people who care for him, and appreciate his qualities. Gatsby, however, has accomplished what Kravitz yearns, yet he lacks what Kravitz takes for granted: love. Thus, there certainly is a paradox about the belief that Kravitz and Gatsby are the same character. Both live two opposite lives, yearning for what the other takes for granted. Yet, their journeys are eerily similar. Perhaps Richler and Fitzgerald are not criticizing the idea of pursuing a dream. Perhaps they are revealing the fine equilibrium that must be reached in order to avoid destruction- a man without desire is a nobody, but a man without anyone to appreciate his desire is also a nobody.   

Mordecai Richler's The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz certainly provides a stark contrast to F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby. While Fitzgerald epitomizes descriptive writing techniques, Richler is far more reserved and subtle in terms of description when juxtaposed. However, both writers are able to successfully reveal the precarious journey...

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Racism in African society and its...Racism in African society and its effect on the character of Hally in "MASTER HAROLD" "¦AND THE BOYS. In the play "Master Harold" "¦and the Boys, Hally demonstrates, through repeated acts and expressions, the sentiment of the entire African society at the time the play takes place. In 1950, the policy of apartheid was beginning to be practiced in South Africa. The Population Registration Act was passed, which divided the population into four racial groups Post 112. The Group Area Act of 1950 controlled ownership of property by different races. The 1950 amendment to the Immorality Act prohibited sexual contact between different races. These are the attitudes of the time. Yet, in the beginning of the play, the reader does not sense the separation of Hally and the two black men that later is blatantly portrayed. In fact, we come to learn that Sam and Hally are so close that Hally would actually spend a lot of his time as a child in Sam's room, where they and Willie would play and talk often. So, for part of the play, Sam and Hally reminisce of the old days. For example, there was one time when Sam built a kite out of brown paper and tomato-box wood pasted together with flour and water and with a tail of Hally's mother's old stockings. Hally loved the kite once it was in the air and had a lot of fun with it. Hally almost wishes that he could return to those times because that was a time when "life felt the right size". Fugard 379 Unfortunately, Hally's mood changes drastically throughout the play. When his mother calls from the hospital with news that his father may coming home, Hally quickly becomes very sharp with the two black men. For example, he says to Sam "Tell me something I don't know, Sam. What the hell do you think I was saying to my Mom? All I can say is fuck-it-all." Fugard 387 One of the first derogatory remarks that Hally makes towards Sam comes shortly after Hally's first telephone conversation with his mom. He says "Don't try to be clever, Sam. It doesn't suit you." Fugard 397 We can determine by his mood shift and by his attitude on the phone with his mother, that Hally doesn't want his father to return home for some reason. We find out that his father is a drunken cripple, who has caused Hally shame for most of his life. The play recalls one instance which caused a young Hally to be ashamed of his father. Sam had to carry Hally's father home from a bar because he had passed out drunk. "A crowded main street with all the people watching a little boy following his drunk father on a nigger's back!" Fugard 649. Sam realized that the drunk was no person to be teaching Hally to be a man. That is why he made the kite. So Hally would have something to look up to and be proud of, instead of ashamed. When they were flying the kite together, Sam tied it to a bench and said he couldn't stay. Hally was too young to realize it at the time, but that was a white-only bench. Sam could not stay. This is one example of the restrictions put up between blacks and whites in South Africa during the time of apartheid. The Separate Amenities Act would subject a black man to fines of up to fifty pounds or as much as three months in jail, simply for sitting on a white-only bench. That is the circumstances that Hally grew up around which forced him to have the same kinds of racist views as the rest of the society he lived in. Another of Hally's actions that demonstrated his attitude towards blacks is when he strikes Willie with his ruler. He is only seventeen, and hitting a grown man with a ruler. He can get away with it only because a black man dare not touch a white boy, for fear of the consequences. In the beginning of the play, Sam describes what it is like for black people in jail in South Africa. They are beaten with a cane and humiliated. "They make you lie down on a bench. One policeman pulls down your trousers and holds your ankles, another one pulls your shirt over your head and holds your arms"¦" Fugard 166 Obviously, Hally feels he can treat black men the same way, hitting and humiliating them. After this incident, the three begin talking about ballroom dancing, and they think of it as a perfect world in which "nobody trips or stumbles or bumps into anybody else." Fugard 542 They create their own perfect world with their imaginations, which ballroom dancing symbolizes for them. All is well between them until another call comes from Hally's mother. His father would be coming home. Hally's mood once again takes a violent turn for the worse. Sam, overhearing Hally's conversation with his mom, expresses concern in the issue. Hally only tells him to mind his own business. Soon, Hally begins to talk badly of his father. Sam knows that Hally will say something he regrets, so he tries to warn Hally to quit while he's ahead. Instead, Hally turns his anger on Sam. This is when he makes the next in a series of racial comments. He says that his father is Sam's boss, and when same says that isn't true, because he gets paid by Hally's mom, Hally says "He's a white man and that's good enough for you." Fugard 608 Soon after, Hally tells his father's joke about a nigger's arse not being "fair". He tells Sam he wants to be called "Master Harold" from now on, as a sign of respect. The irony of this situation is quite evident. "Master Harold is a boy, and the 'boys' are men." Post 116 So, Hally changes from the beginning of the play when he seems to have a respect and even a love for Sam, to requiring respect of him. His attitude of superiority over the black man is summed up with his most disrespectful action towards Sam, spitting in his face. Throughout the entire play, Hally never apologizes for his disrespect towards Sam, nor does he even show remorse. The reason is that he doesn't see his behavior is wrong. The society he belonged to deliberately sets out to humiliate black people," Durbach 69 and this created an indifference in the members of that society. In South Africa at this time, there was nothing wrong with a white boy hitting a black man. But if a black man had raised a hand against a white boy, he would have been severely punished. Although the two seem to have a friendly relationship, Hally can choose at any time to threaten Sam with the power he has over him. HALLY: To begin with, why don't you also start calling me Master Harold, like Willie. SAM: ["¦] And if I don't? HALLY: You might just lose your job. Fugard 620-624 And it would be just that easy for Hally to have Sam fired. The reason for Hally's disregard of Sam's feelings is the shame he feels about his father. He feels like he has to humiliate someone else in order to feel less ashamed of himself. So he "echoes his father's bigotry" Durbach 71. Hally brings his feelings of shame and self-doubt and tries to unload them on Sam through insults and abuse. He says it is to be a sign of respect. Here, respect loses meaning in the normal context of the word. It is not really respect, but rather correction by threat. Hally is totally safe in anything he says or does towards the two black men simply because he is a white boy in a society that hates black people. So, all the frustration and anger he has inside him as a result of how ashamed he feels of his father is misdirected onto Sam, the man who actually played the role of "father" better than anyone else. Even to the end of the play, Sam is still trying to persuade Hally to take back his racist comments and actions. He does not use violence, but rather "moral suasion and exemplary behavior" Durbach 74. He behaves like a real man in order to teach the real boy how a man behaves. The irony of the situation is that the black men are expected by society to treat the white boy as their "master" so to speak. They are supposed to treat him like a full grown man, while Hally refers to them occasionally as "the boys". In actuality, the "boys" are teaching Hally to be a man. Sam keeps trying, even offering his hand to Hally before Hally turns it down, and walks into the rain leaving Sam to feel like a failure, because he has failed in what he had set out to do with the young Hally, years ago. To "induce change in a morally receptive child" Durbach 76. When Sam offers his hand to Hally, asking him to come down off that white-only bench, which symbolizes the whole of the racist ideals which Hally demonstrates. Sam has hope for Hally, but an attitude ingrained on him from his birth is not one so easily left behind. Sam never blames Hally, realizing that he is just a "casualty of his upbringing" Durbach 76. So, Hally gets away with everything he does to disrespect the pair of black men, and at the end of the day feels no better about himself than he did before. Sam's inaction did not have the effect on Hally he might have hoped for. But Sam loved the boy, and wanted to teach him the right attitude to have. Unfortunately, the effect society had on Hally's character was too deep. So Hally is just a product of his circumstances, and nothing more.   

Racism in African society and its effect on the character of Hally in "MASTER HAROLD" …AND THE BOYS. In the play "Master Harold" …and the Boys, Hally demonstrates, through repeated acts and expressions, the sentiment of the entire African society at the time the play takes place. In 1950, the...

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