Little Bee Character Analysis

Decent Essays

Humans react to extreme stress by creating different coping mechanisms; some become secluded and avoid people, while others stay active in society with the facade of everything being alright. In Chris Cleave’s novel Little Bee, which tells the story of a refugee’s quest (Little Bee) for a better life in England after fleeing Nigeria; this facade took the form of an “alter-ego” in which Charlie, Sarah and Little Bee all adopt some change to how they act and present themselves to other people. Charlie the youngest of the three characters experiences the most profound alter ego, but Sarah and Little Bee have subtle alter egos that are present at points of the novel. They all experience an identity crisis brought on by different stressful events and people, which prompts the creation of a new “alter ego” or facade as a way to avoid dealing with the problems they faced in their past, but ultimately as the story went on the characters realize that they can’t escape the past and they need to accept what has occurred and face the baddies they are running from. Charlie is the prime example of a character who has an alter-ego, as he both literally dons a costume and mentally identifies as Batman. Andrew's neglect of his family, due to his depression holding him hostage, made Charlie take notice and want to try and fight his internal “baddies,” which are a symbol of his depression. This created a hole in Charlie’s character in which he attempts to use the Batman persona to masque

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