Ap English Literature Themes

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The first major encounter with the theme of guilt is at the beginning of the novel. Dunny and his friend Percy Boyd Staunton, who later becomes Boy Staunton, get into a fight due to Percy’s jealousy over Dunny having a fester sled. Dunny does not want to fight with Percy so he walks away, which only intrigues Percy even more to the point that he follows Dunny and starts throwing snowballs. Both boys are already almost late for dinner so Dunny is hurrying. This is also the time that Amasa and Mary Dempster are taking an evening stroll. Once Dunny has almost reached his house, Percy throws one final snowball that has a large rock in it, Dunny ducks under it and runs in front of the Dempsters. The snowball hits Mary in the side of the head which …show more content…
He bears the weight of what has happened to Mary. He would feel this way because he knows he has done something wrong and is afraid of being caught and feeling ashamed. What has happened should not have happened and it would seem out of the norm, which can greatly influence how much guilt Dunny would feel (Hyegyu Leea & Hye-Jin Paekb, 2014). There is no one he can talk to about what he and Percy have done, so he bears all of the guilt himself. After his previous statement he says “I was just upon eleven, and I matured early, so that some of the earliest changes of puberty were beginning in me.” (Davies 17). This further proves how much Dunny had to grow up and understand the difficulties of life at a young age. He is explaining how he has to mature mentally to get through this issue and how there are also physical changes that he is experiencing. While he knows he should not be the one who feels responsible, he feels that he can tell no one for the reasons that; his mother is too strict and Dunny does not want to face her wrath, his father would take his mother’s side, Percy is simply going to deny everything and find some way to blame Dunny for everything and, he feels too ashamed to tell Mary or Amasa

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