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Character Interaction In Henry James' The Pupil

507 words - 2 pages

In “The Pupil” by Henry James, we are able to travel with Pemberton as he searches for answers to his thoughts. Through fluctuations of tone and the interesting point of view from Pemberton, James allows readers to experience his hesitation and unravel his relationships with Mrs. Moreen and Morgan Moreen. The comprehensiveness of this passage helps portray Mrs. Moreen’s physical qualities as well as Morgan’s social well-being as readers learn how the smallest connection can forever impact a life.
As the narrator starts, we are able to identify with the “poor young man’s” nervousness as it overcomes his body through hesitation and procrastination. Searching for answers to his thoughts, we are able to learn about the Oxford graduate and understand why he desires money. Though a bright man, Pemberton lets fear take over his body worrying that “his small scholar might prove cleverer than himself.” In many instances in life, we cannot bear being less than someone and are able to prove our strength through knowledge. Through Mrs. Moreen’s ambiguity and Pemberton’s apprehension, we can label their relationship as strictly work related rather than mere fun and games.
Mrs. Moreen’s relationship with Morgan is not common for a mother and her son. She treats him like a mere object and considers him to be worthless as he “fetch[es] her fan”. Readers can also infer that Mrs. Moreen speaks harshly of him because Pemberton is able to note that a “boy of eleven shouldn’t catch” the things she says. Nevertheless, she still has the caring heart of a parent and the reader...

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