The Rocking Horse Winner By Shirley Jackson Essay

1188 Words Mar 22nd, 2016 null Page
The personality of a character typically reveals how and to what extent they will be able to face a barrier that is placed in front of them. Kind-hearted Paul from the short story “The Rocking-Horse Winner”, written by D.H. Laurence in 1926, has a level of perseverance to which most readers would never be able to compare. However, this unbreakable focus ultimately leads to his failure of breaking the barrier and to his tragic death. Tessie, an independent thinker from the short story “The Lottery”, written by Shirley Jackson in 1948, goes against the traditional social norms and viewpoints of her townspeople. However, this outcry for a change in morals fails to save her life as she is cruelly stoned to death. Personal opinions, beliefs, values and thoughts about one’s self play a crucial role in how characters overcome barriers and their motivations to do so. Paul, a lucky young boy is one of the most emotional characters in the short story, “The Rocking-Horse Winner”. Much like she interacts with other children, Paul’s mother does not care for any of her children, shows no affection and is only concerned with how much money and material objects she has accumulated. The narrator even states that she does not want her children as she feels that “they had been thrust upon her, and she could not love them” (Laurence 100). As Paul has grown up with parents who constantly work and do not love him, his self-confidence has been diminished and he feels inadequately capable of…

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