The Importance Of Self Identity In Whale Talk: The Most Impactful Story

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A young boy sits on the floor gazing up in amusement as his parents tell him stories that have traveled from generation to generation. Whether it be a tale of malicious war or brave acts of heroism, the little boy will always remember the impactful tales. But what about the parents; what is their motive for telling tales to their child? People tell stories for different reasons; a best selling author may write his story to sell books. While a parent tells a story to set their child straight, others simply want the thrill of telling tales of their adventurous life. For The Tao Jones ,or TJ, in Chris Crutcher's Whale Talk , the most impactful story he will hear and tell is his own. Someone might not solely tell their own story, but, are …show more content…
After receiving their letterman jackets the team thrusts their hand up in the air. However, Andy Mott of course has to show the school who he really is, revealing his his most vulnerable asset. TJ recalls “Mott pulls up his pant leg, unhooked his leg and thrust it high into the air.” (275) For Andy Mott, the truest form of self identity is a showing off his prosthetic leg; the same leg he has kept a secret for years. He is finally able to show everyone who he is and what he has. Like a flower blooming, Andy and the boys are finally comfortable with who they are and grow as people. Throughout the competitions, Andy Mott is slowly revealing snippets of his life to the team; gradually uncovering his true identity throughout the novel. Overmore, after scaring TJ with a phase of depression, John is another example of self identity. After recalling the horrific tales of his pasts, TJ’s dad reveals how he truly feels about human communication. Referring to the necessity for self identity, he states “Whale talk is the truth and in a short period of time you know exactly what it is to be you.” (179) John Paul expresses his true feelings in this scene. Explaining his tragic accident, he is truly raw, and he is finally able to express his true feelings to his son. He reveals how he perceives the world, and what he thinks about human communication. …show more content…
Rich Marshal tried and failed to kill his daughter, Heidi, only because John went into the bullet's path. Feeling redeemed from his past affairs, he tells his son, “Guess I killed one and saved another” (288) John finds a sense of redemption after saving another child after accidentally killing one in his earlier years. John has built up abhorrence against Rich Marshall, not because he uses racial slurs; but rather because he has neglected and abused his daughter, Heidi. John's life purpose has been to help, save, or do anything he can for a child in need, including adopting TJ. After putting her children in harm's way, more times then a human has fingers, while remembering his senior year TJ believes Alicia is starting to recover from her horrible choices and begin to undoubtedly care for her children. He recalls “I think Alicia has some sense of what it means to step up even if it was discovered late” (297) After permanently taking up residence at the Jones’ house, Alicia has finally learned what it means to be a mother and TJ recognizes that she is trying because she loves her babies. Like a bird learning to fly Alicia, throughout the novel, has been trying to figure out what it means to be a dependable mother. Even though her story is riddled with malign negative, she finds a way to come out on top with perseverance and redemption. Finally, TJ shares

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