The stories of “Poor Peter” in Cranford and of Boo Radley Essay Example
The stories of “Poor Peter” in Cranford and of Boo Radley Essay Example

The stories of “Poor Peter” in Cranford and of Boo Radley Essay Example

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  • Pages: 9 (2229 words)
  • Published: November 2, 2017
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Arthur "Boo" Radley, a main character in To Kill A Mockingbird, was involved with the wrong crowd as a teenager and faced legal trouble. Consequently, a judge ruled for him to be sent to a state industrial school. However, Arthur's father opposed this decision and negotiated with the judge to allow him to bring Arthur back home. Mr. Radley, known as a strict Baptist, was considered by Calpurnia as the "meanest man God ever blew breath into." To discipline Arthur for his misbehavior, Mr. Radley confined him to their house, not even permitting him to attend church services.

After Mr Radley's death, Arthur's older brother Nathan took on the responsibility of caring for him. Due to the distinctiveness of the Radley house compared to the rest of Maycomb, speculations about Arthur began to circulate.


He transformed into a figure of local folklore, appearing more like a myth rather than a real person. Jem and Scout, two children residing in the neighborhood, along with many others in the community, believed that 'Boo' was confined in the basement, surviving solely on cats for sustenance. "It is quite a grim topic to consider, but I guess it fits the overall morbidity."

Jean Louise, I am certain that he is still alive because I have not witnessed his removal. " 'Perhaps he passed away and they placed his body in the chimney. ' "From where did you acquire such a notion? " 'That's what Jem informed me. ' Jem and Scout, along with their new friend Dill, enacted the life of Arthur without realizing that Arthur himself observed their antics. Their father, Atticus, was aware that Arthur could see them an

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advised the children to cease their foolish behavior. As a lawyer and member of the state legislature, Atticus commanded respect within the community and was acquainted with every individual in Maycomb.

When Scout was 2 years old and Jem was 6, their mother passed away suddenly from a heart attack. After her death, Atticus, their father, raised the two children with the assistance of Calpurnia, a black maid. Initially, Scout had difficulties getting along with Calpurnia and always felt her presence to be tyrannical. In the story To kill a Mockingbird, the character Tom Robinson, a black man, was wrongly accused of rape. Alongside Arthur Radley, Tom revealed the extent of prejudice in the 1930s. Despite being proven innocent, Tom faced societal bias as the jury adhered to Maycomb's social code that assumed guilt for black men.

Despite being aware that Tom Robinson was a good man and Bob and Mayella Newell were not, the people of Maycomb were unable to acknowledge this due to their stubborn pride. Regrettably, Tom Robinson suffered the ultimate consequence for their refusal to accept the truth. The role of the narrator significantly impacts how readers perceive the story in each book. In Harper Lee's novel To Kill A Mockingbird, Scout assumes the role of narrator, offering a child's viewpoint on the world around her. By delving into her thoughts and witnessing her misconceptions of events, readers partake in her journey towards maturity as she observes her brother Jem also growing up and becoming more emotionally distant from her.

"The story 'Poor Peter' is narrated primarily by Miss Matty, an elderly woman who uses more formal language to recount the events that took

place. It is evident that she has deeply contemplated what occurred over many years and has considered it from various perspectives, unlike Scout who presented a more one-sided account. The main characters in 'To Kill a Mockingbird' include Scout, Jem, Atticus, and Boo. Each of them represents different types of individuals: Boo, as the outcast of the neighborhood whom people mocked and feared; Atticus, as the selfless martyr who felt compelled to do what was right; Scout, as the innocent child trying to comprehend the world around her; and Jem, as the young boy striving to gain the same level of respect as his father."

Boo, locked away by his father for a long time, was seen by Maycomb as an evil, anti-social figure who lived in darkness, consumed cats, and poisoned his trees' nuts. However, Arthur "Boo" Radley did not deserve these labels; he was simply different from the rest of the county. His father's mistreatment during his troubled teenage years caused him to become isolated from society.

He spent his days observing the street and the neighborhood, witnessing others go about their lives, while they gossip about him and partake in activities that imitate and ridicule him. Scout couldn't comprehend why Boo would choose to remain indoors with no activities to occupy his time (when discussing with Miss Maudie, she inquires, "Yes ma'am, but I would want to come outside. Why doesn't he?") until she experienced what he saw: "I started to walk home. The street lights blinked down the entire length of the street leading to town. I had never seen our neighborhood from this perspective..."

During the day, I believed that you could see

all the way to the post office corner. Scout, the young narrator, displays a strong and intelligent personality that defies stereotypes. However, her Aunt is determined to change this. Nevertheless, Scout enjoys her unique perspective: "I felt trapped in a pink cotton penitentiary, and for the second time in my life, I wanted to run away immediately." She expresses profound thoughts in a childish manner: "As I walked home, I pondered that Jem and I were becoming adults, yet there was little left for us to learn, except maybe algebra."

Throughout the book, Jem, the brother of Scout, made an effort to appear mature by displaying bravery and cleverness. He also attempted to assert authority over Scout, imitating their father, Atticus. Scout disliked when he behaved this way, leading to frequent arguments between them. Lee depicts Atticus as a martyr, a man of strong ethical principles who can only find inner peace by doing what he believes is right. As a widower raising two children in a world of racism and prejudice, Atticus strives to ensure they are well nurtured.

The text highlights the significance of not blindly accepting popular beliefs without questioning them. This is evident in instances where the character advises Jem and Scout to leave Boo alone and defends Tom Robinson during the trial. Despite not being obligated, the character believes it is morally right to take these actions. Regarding Tom Robinson's case, they mention that it strikes at the very heart of a person's moral compass and expresses their inability to live with themselves if they don't try to support him. Meanwhile, "Poor Peter" (Cranford) features key characters such as Peter, his parents,

and Miss Matty.

Peter, a joker, was harshly treated by his father. Initially, Peter's father believed that "he richly deserved it." However, he later regretted his actions and felt guilty and remorseful. Sometimes, he would speak in an authoritarian manner but then swiftly change his tone, placing his hand on our shoulders and inquiring if he had said anything hurtful. In contrast, Arthur Radley's father in To Kill A Mockingbird remained unaware of the profound damage and trauma he caused to his son as a result of his own beliefs.

Peter's mother was deeply traumatized by his departure, to the point that she passed away just a little over a year later. Throughout the last year of her life, she mourned Peter's absence, constantly anticipating his return. However, as time passed, she could no longer maintain the faint hope that he would come back to her. It was truly ironic that the day after her passing, the family received a package from Peter that could have brought his mother joy and reassurance. Unfortunately, her grief over his departure remained insurmountable, and the solution arrived a day too late.

"But, you see, he observed what we did not - that it was causing my mother's demise... unsuited to endure the trauma she had experienced." Both Cranford and To Kill A Mockingbird, written in the 1930's, revolve around stereotypes and individuals defying societal expectations. Although set in different countries, both locations share similar societies. In both communities, women dominate and adhere to strict social norms. Deviating from these norms would result in being ostracized and labeled as "trash," as seen with the character Mr Raymond in To Kill a Mockingbird.

He defied social conventions by marrying a black woman and having biracial children.

People judged him for this behavior and found it easier to categorize him as an alcoholic, as it provided a concrete explanation for them. "…I attempt to provide them with a justification, you understand. It assists individuals if they can assign a reason... people can claim Dolphus Raymond is controlled by alcohol - that is why he refuses to change his habits. He cannot control himself, which is why he lives the way he does." Authors Lee and Gaskell discuss how individuals who deviate from societal norms are punished. If you diverge from what is expected of you, if you challenge the conformity of your environment, you will face discrimination.

Tom Robinson, a black man, lost his life because people refused to acknowledge the truth that the white individuals lied and that the black man was innocent. Similarly, Arthur Radley lived a lonely existence due to his father's imposition of beliefs upon him and the severe punishment he received. Peter, feeling like an outsider, decided to leave his home as he couldn't bear to continue disappointing his family. In the novel To Kill A Mockingbird, Scout also confronts the perspectives of others. Her Aunt Alexandra wishes for Scout to behave like a well-mannered girl, but Scout desires to freely play in the mud while wearing overalls. "Stay with us Jean Louise," Aunt Alexandra pleaded.

As part of her campaign to teach me proper manners, she tried to instill in me the qualities of a lady. In the town of Cranford, Peter was known for his pranks and love for making others laugh. While Peter found

joy in his playful antics, his father held strict views and disapproved of his behavior as it went against gentlemanly conduct. When Peter played a trick on his sister Deborah, he failed to consider the potential consequences: the shame that would befall his sister if people believed she had conceived a child out of wedlock, and the punishment he himself would face once his actions were discovered - an outcome that would deeply disappoint and embarrass their family.

When Peter's secret was uncovered, his father's anger knew no bounds and he publicly whipped him with a cane. "Even though Peter showed extreme selfishness and thoughtlessness, one could argue that his father's reaction was too severe." His father made sure that Peter informed their mother about the punishment inflicted upon him, emphasizing how much he deserved it. This treatment from Peter's father paralleled Boo Radley's own rebellious conduct during adolescence in Harper Lee's novel To Kill a Mockingbird.

Lee and Gaskell depict Boo and Peter in a manner that suggests they are not as terrible as they appear. Despite their mischievous and troublesome behavior, they are actually good individuals. Although Boo is feared by both children and many adults, he proves himself to be a kind person when he saves Jem and Scout's lives. Even prior to this heroic act, some people already did not believe that he was wicked, as Atticus demonstrates when he instructs the children: "I'm going to tell you once: stop tormenting that man. This applies to both of you as well."

Peter was known as a nice person, despite his misguided actions: "What possessed our poor Peter I don't know; he had the sweetest

temper..." In both societies, rebels and jokers faced harsh treatment. When Arthur Radley, a teenager, became involved with the wrong crowd, nobody in Maycomb had the courage to inform Mr Radley. As a result, Arthur and his friends got drunk and were arrested. They were sent to a state industrial school, which was not seen as a disgrace. However, Mr Radley was deeply religious, a "foot washing Baptist," and Calpurnia referred to him as Mr Radley. He made an arrangement with the judge to bring his son home, while the other boys received a quality education. Arthur was hidden away and remained unseen for over ten years. This absence turned him into more of a legend than an actual person. Due to the unique nature of the Radley house compared to the rest of the neighborhood – "The doors of the Radley house were closed on weekdays as well as Sundays" – rumors began circulating about Arthur. People believed he was locked in a basement with no food except cats and that anything on his property could cause harm.

Both Cranford and the larger community were unfriendly towards those seen as different, viewing them as wicked or mad, which led to their exclusion. Peter, feeling like he had let down his family profoundly, made the tough choice to depart. He conveyed his regret and said goodbye to his mother with the words, "Mother, I am here to say may God bless you always." While speaking, his lips quivered and it appeared that he desired to express more affection but restrained himself due to his hidden intentions.

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