The Go Between and Spies

3835 WordsMay 6, 201316 Pages
“THE MAIN CHARACTERS IN THE GO-BETWEEN AND SPIES ARE SOCIALLY OPRRESSED ARE SOCIALLY OPPRESSSED” How far do you agree with this statement? Social Oppression is a main theme explored throughout the two tragic novels, The Go-Between and Spies. Throughout the novels, L.P. Hartley and Michael Frayn successfully convey the idea, through the use of their main characters, the effects of social oppression and class divide. Using many techniques they show how class and oppression had power over the people of the Victorian era. And even after the turn of the century, People were still trapped in the shadows of the past era. Both novels are told as flashbacks taking us through the lives of two main protagonists. The climax of both novels lead to the…show more content…
Unlike Leo, Stephen’s low class was known to everyone and he couldn’t even dare to keep it a secret. He was ‘the other ranks’ and unlike Leo, although he felt the class difference he was still ‘grateful to be so’. He went to a different school completely from Keith with uniforms ‘socially coded for ease of reference’. He lived in a 'semi-detached ' house attached to 'the pinchers ' making the whole situation 'even more shameful '. While his friend Keith lived in a house with 'white wicket gates ' with a 'neat red brick path that curves through rose beds '. He felt like he wasn’t even worthy of the Hayward’s as he says ‘The Hayward’s were impeccable and yet they tolerated him’ and Mrs Hayward’s ‘incomprehensible niceness’. Stephen like Leo, has the colour ‘green’ associated with them as Stephen admits ‘everything about me was plainly green '. Stephen didn’t dare to go against Keith’s orders as Keith ‘was the leader’ and he ‘was the led’. Stephen’s feeling of social inferiority to Keith allows Keith to dominate and intimidate Keith’s life as Stephen sees Keith as ‘the first in a whole series of dominant figures whose disciple I became’. Stephen sees himself as the ‘undersized boy with the teapot ears following his powerful friend open mouthed and credulous’. Stephen is much more different from Leo as
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