Heroism And Rebellion In Private Peaceful, By Michael Morpurgo

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The novel Private Peaceful by author, Michael Morpurgo, is set in 1900s Britain and reveals the trials and tribulations of two working-class boys. Heroism and rebellion are key themes throughout the narrative, as they are the qualities that save lives and ultimately leads to death. Heroism is shown through the unyielding courage of Charlie Peaceful, whilst rebellion is seen when he resists authority and convention. He disobeys orders and rules because of pride, to keep his brother safe, and for the greater moral good. Charlie shows both arrogance, protectiveness, and care in his home in Iddesleigh, the training camp in Etaples, and the trenches of Ypres. Therefore, Charlie Peaceful rebels for both selfish and selfless reasons, making him both …show more content…
He ignores rules to save lives, despite the danger that he may face. This is evident when Charlie poaches off the Colonel’s land. While this may seem like something he did just to be rebellious, it was actually because “there was no money” and they “were becoming very hungry.” This highlights how Charlie was prepared to do whatever it took to make sure his family had food. He would do anything to help his family survive because he cares about his family, and wants to make sure they don't die. Another time Charlie defied the rules of society was when he stole the Colonel’s dog, Bertha. He did this because the colonel was “going to shoot her.” Consequentially, the Colonel fires Charlie. Charlie lost his job to save a dog’s life. He saved her life because it was the right thing to do. This situation highlights Charlie’s courage and shows that he is noble and brave. In the same way, Charlie’s grit is evident when he saves Sergeant Wilkes’ life. After the sergeant is injured in the war, Charlie is told to leave him to die, but Charlie disregards the order, saying “If one goes we all go.” While Charlie taking Wilkie back was dangerous, he did it because he couldn't stand to have had the opportunity to save his life and not taken it. Once again, Charlie shows true character and ignores orders to help another organism. Thus, Charlie is a hero, even though he disobeys orders, because it is for the greater moral …show more content…
Charlie ignoring instructions can due to his arrogance, which is inconsiderate and rebellious. It also can be because of his protective nature or his need to help others, which is compassionate and heroic. The reader learns that the character of Charlie Peaceful is loyal and courageous, but still flawed. This makes him relatable to the audience, while also inspiring them to be brave like he was. Ultimately, the text teaches the reader about how normal people were flung into the harsh realities of war, and how the war was entirely unjust. It makes the person reading question that if heroes were shot for cowardice, what happened to the

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