This Is A Characterization Report On A Short Story By Sherwood Anderson, Entitled "Brother Death".

1469 words - 6 pages

"Brother Death"Control has many different meanings for many different people. To most, however, this word brings to mind one person forcing another do his or her will, but other things have control over people as well. Sherwood Anderson shows two examples of control in Don and Ted. These two characters have problems created by their difficult lives. The other characters' personalities either help or hinder the children, creating a family with a constant conflict until one of the characters either changes, or disappears from the story all together."Brother Death" by Sherwood Anderson is a short story about power. Don and Ted both want to be in control of their life, but different circumstances take that away from them. Ted wants to live a normal life, but his family prohibits him because of his fatal heart condition. Mary, the only one who understands Ted's misery, shares a special bond with him. John Grey, the father, has a natural ability to judge cows and could tell how much one weighed just by looking at it. This makes him successful as a cattleman, but his success drives him to constantly push into his neighbor's, the Aspinwahls, land. John's 18-year-old son Don takes after his father in almost every way. He has the ability to judge steers, and has won many awards. He also likes to be in control like his father, which creates a power-struggle between the two. Louise, the well-educated wife of John Grey, comes from the Aspinwahl family. Not originally the prettiest Aspinwahl, Louise shocks her family by blossoming beautifully after her marriage. The story centers mainly, however, on Ted and Don's troubles. Because of Ted's heart condition, most of the family is over-protective and does not let him play or have as much fun as he could. Mary gains Ted's freedom at one point by standing up to her mother. After this, Ted can do all the "risky" things that he has always wanted to do, like playing in the creek or walking barefoot. Don, on the other hand faces a different situation. He and his father are involved in a power-struggle over the family land. They have an argument over control, and when Don loses he runs away for a few days, but eventually comes back home under his father's control. At the end of the story Ted dies, but Mary feels that he was lucky in that he always knew where he stood, unlike Don, who has to suffer a terrible life, never being sure of his status in the family.One of the main characters in "Brother Death", Ted, has a big problem that influences everything that he does in his life. Ted had "a severe attack of diphtheria" at eight-years-old that resulted in "some kind of heart disease" at his current age of 11. The family doctor told them he would not live very long, and he might "just drop down dead" at any time. He did not have a lot of strength, but knowing about his short life span made him very "curiously alive". He enjoys doing the risky "risky" things his parents forbid to do. The rest of his family, with the...

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