Life Of Pi And The Cook Character Analysis

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In the novel Life of Pi, written by Yann Martel, indirect characterization of Pi, his mother, and the cook are used to show that survival situations decrease peoples’ mental states and to convey the message that survival situations bring out the worst in people. Throughout the novel, Pi and his mother have been characterized as gentle and peaceful characters. They were vegetarians and were never violent. However, when thrown into a survival situation, with life and death on the line, they break their morals. After refusing to eat meat for a while and starving, Pi says “My mother, a lifelong vegetarian, brought herself to eat raw fish and raw turtle. She had a very hard time of it. She never got over her revulsion. It came easier to me. I found …show more content…
He was violent, aggressive, and ruthless when it came to survival. He wasn’t a good man from the start. However, throughout the journey, his mental state decreases tremendously. After starving for a while, when Pi let a turtle escape from his grip, the cook lost it, “He hit me. Mother hit him. He hit her back” (p.309). Although this seems like typical behavior for the cook, this was his breaking point. The cook snapped after being slapped by Pi’s mother and murdered her in cold blood. After watching the cook and his mother fight, Pi observed “The knife appeared. He raised it in the air. It came down. Next it was up—it was red. It went up and down repeatedly” (p.309). The cook murdered her out of anger and cold blood, not because it was the only way to survive, which shows how his mental state has decreased to the point where it doesn’t matter anymore. However, the cook felt remorse. He knew he had gone too far. To apologize, he gave Pi the best parts of the turtle and let him drink the turtle’s blood, however, it wasn’t enough. After fighting and killing the cook, Pi noticed, “He gave up. He let himself be killed, though it was a struggle. He knew he had gone too far, even by his bestial standards. He had gone too far and now he didn’t want to go on living anymore” (p.310). The cook’s mental state has fallen so low after killing and eating Pi’s mother that he doesn’t want to live anymore. He is disgusted with himself and the things he has done. The cook started out as a hostile, merciless man who killed to survive, but at the end of the adventure, he had become a man who kills in cold blood and loses his will to

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