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Pride in Greenleaf and Spotted Horses

Pride in Greenleaf” and Spotted Horses

Pride is a feeling that most people in the world have always shared. Pride can be a great thing to have, but when a person has too much pride, the situation becomes very different. Pride can cause a person to do things he would not do under normal circumstances, and it can cause a person unhappiness. Mrs. May in “Greenleaf” and Henry Armstid in “Spotted Horses” both have a sad type of pride that leads to untimely death and demise. In Henry’s case, his pride is the direct cause of his injuries done by the horses, and Mrs. May’s is somewhat more indirect.

In “Greenleaf,” Mrs. May thought that she was a blessing to the world. She thought that everything good that happened was her doing and that everything she did was good. At one point in the story she says, “I work and slave, I struggle and sweat to keep this place for them and as soon as I’m dead, they’ll marry trash and bring it in here and ruin everything. They will marry trash and ruin everything I’ve done.” Although she hates the dairy farm and her two sons do not live up to her standards, she still has a sense of pride about them causing her to be so preoccupied with what she has done for them. The bull, a prominent symbol for what Mrs. May cannot control, meanders throughout the story and clashes and conflicts with her pride. The two are intertwined: she constantly visualizes and hears the bull in the day and sleep. In one of her dreams she talks of being “aware that what ever it was had been eating as long as she had the place and had eaten everything from the beginning of her fence line up to the house and now was eating the house and calmly with the same steady rhythm would continue through the house, eating her and the boys, and then on, eating everything but the Greenleafs.” The bull symbolizes what she cannot do in life, what she cannot control, and what she has not done, and it is what makes her take the last step before her death by bringing out her pride and causing her to try and take control over the unknown, over itself. She is then gored to death by the bull, and this proves the point that she should not have concerned her whole life with her pride and what she had done and what she could not ultimately control.

Pip as a Sympathetic Character in Great Expectations

Pip as a Sympathetic Character in Great Expectations

Can you imagine being totally in love with someone who is completely turned off by you? This is what happens to Pip. Throughout the book Estella disregards his feelings. In Great Expectations my sympathy for Pip fluctuates. Pip starts out as a sympathetic character because he is poor, his parents are dead, and he must live under Mrs. Joe’s strict rules. As the story moves on, my sympathy for Pip decreases in every way except one: his relationship with Estella.

Ever since their first acquaintance, Pip has thought Estella to be the most beautiful girl alive. He changes when he gets around her. When Mrs. Havisham asks Pip about Estella, he answers with words like “proud,” “pretty,” and “insulting.” Miss Havisham wants Pip to like Estella, and she tells Estella she can break his heart.

As the visits to Miss Havisham’s increase, Pip realizes his feelings for Estella. He practically cannot live without her, but she treats him as a common boy. Pip wants more than anything to become uncommon so Estella might come to like him. He wants her to think of him as a person and not as an uneducated blacksmith apprentice. Estella begins to realize that Pip has feelings and taunts him by asking if he thinks she is pretty. A significant scene is when Estella questions Pip about herself and she slaps him. Then she teases him more and says why doesn’t he cry again. Pip replies, “Because I’ll never cry for you again,” but he knows this is not true and says this “was, I suppose, a false declaration as ever was made, for I was inwardly crying for her then, and I know what I know of the pain she caused me afterwards” (94).

As the two characters grow up and mature and as Pip becomes a gentleman, Estella learns of the extent of Pip’s feelings. She tells Pip she is to be married and says his pain should pass in no time, about a week. Pip then reveals every thought and feeling he has ever had for Estella over the years. The most important parts of his confession are in the beginning of the speech. Pip confesses, “. . . you are part of my existence, part of myself. You have been in every line I have ever read, since I first came here, the rough common boy whose poor heart you wounded even then.

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