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Hagar, The Stone Angel The Stone Angel By Margret Laurence

1438 words - 6 pages

Hagar, The Stone Angel. The main character in Margaret Laurence's novel 'The Stone Angel', Hagar, is one of deep complexity, instilled in her from early childhood. Raised by only her father and the maid, Auntie Doll, Hagar develops an ignorance towards emotions, her own, and other's. In Laurence's novel the stone angel introduced at the beginning, is a strong symbol of Hagar's personality and traits in many aspects. The stone angel is a direct representation of the Currie family pride, Hagar's pride and her stubbornness, as the angel was bought "…in pride to mark [Hagar's deceased mother's] bones…"(3). The angel was placed at the highest point in Manawaka, for all to see the wealth and prestige of the Currie family. As the stone angel her father bought had "the eyeballs [left] blank."(3), and was therefore blinded, unable to view the town below; Hagar was blind to the feelings and needs of others. Hagar's pride sways her decisions to continuously disregard the feelings of those around her. Not only does she lack compassion, but Hagar does not display any emotions for she believes emotion shows weakness. Through the death of her husband and her son Hagar comes to terms with herself and realizes that she has been "transformed to stone" (81).The stone angel placed in the cemetery of Manawaka was placed by Jason Currie "…in pride to mark [His deceased wife's] bones and to proclaim his dynasty, as he fancied, forever and a day." (3). The angel was purchased in Italy and brought to Manawaka, it "…was the first, the largest and certainly the costliest." (3) stone angel in the cemetery. The angel was placed in the cemetery to broadcast over the town, the Currie family's wealth and class. The stone angel is a direct representation of the Currie family's pride, as well as Hagar's pride and stubbornness. Hagar inherited her great amount of self pride from her father, this undesirable trait has caused her many hardships throughout her life. When Hagar's father sends her East to attend College she feels as though Matt deserved to go, not her. Proud that she has been given the opportunity to go, and frightened that her father's decision may change, "[Hagar] said nothing until [her] trunk was packed and all the arrangements made. Then [Hagar] spoke."(42). On the train to the East, Hagar shows the slightest signs of remorse, that she has taken the opportunity from Matt, but justifies it by reassuring herself that he wouldn't know. "…[Hagar] cried thinking of him, but, of course, he never knew that, and [she would] have been the last to tell him." (42). In many ways Hagar is a spitting image of her father, one of the many parallels is they both disapprove of their child's marriage. Hagar's father does not approve of her marrying Bram. "'There's not a decent girl in this town would wed without her family's consent,' he said. 'It's not done.'"(49) Despite her fathers wishes, Hagar, pride driven proceeds to marry Bram. "'It'll be...

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