Essay on A Lesson Before Dying

884 Words Oct 14th, 2013 4 Pages
Erika Seda
AP English
2 February 2012
A Lesson Before Dying

4. The novel A Lesson Before Dying is centered on a man who has no faith or real religious belief. His lack of interest in God or church greatly affects his aunt and the Reverend, but as the novel progresses the reader in turn finds that the main character, Grant, does indeed acquire some sense of religion in his own way. As the novel reaches its climax and Grant builds a stronger relationship with Jefferson he allows himself to have a limited religion. Its “limited” in the sense that Jefferson is the one who inspired him to believe in something, but he refuses to believe in the same God that those who convicted Jefferson believe in. The personal growth of not only
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Between Grant and Reverend Ambrose comes the obligation of helping Jefferson die with purpose and passion. Along with this obligation comes the commitment to God that is initiated by Reverend Ambrose and followed eventually by Jefferson and Grant. Grant feels at first threatened and angered at the constant upbringing of faith and religion. It wasn’t until Jefferson and Grant created a bond where he honored his obligation and gained a sense of self- assurance that they both realized the benefits that come out of faith. Grant and Vivian almost feed off of each other in a sense of motivation. Vivian is Grant’s motivation to be a great teacher and teach his pupils the right thing. Finally the relationship between Emma Glenn and Pichots is an interesting one. Pichots depicts your typical white man and his need for power, while Emma embodies the African-American group as a whole. Emma has the obligation of trying to have her grandson die with conviction and in her attempt of making this happen she kisses up to Grant in order to keep him happy so he can visit Jefferson. She exploits Grant and Jefferson to the point where they build their own relationship outside of the fact that Grant is to show Jefferson how to be man. These relationships describe the themes of commitment and depict just how seriously these characters took their

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