The Scarlet Ibis Character Analysis

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Mina Chapman
Mrs. Pfeifer
Block 4
23 October 2017
“The Scarlet Ibis”
“The Scarlet Ibis” by James Hurst is a story of a boy who lets pride get to his mind. The story follows Brother, who longs for a brother to play with but instead has with a brother who is invalid. He taunts his little brother, Doodle, in many ways, such as making him touch his own casket. Because he is embarrassed of Doodle, Brother makes a point to teach him how to walk; in addition, he also tries to teach him how to run, swim, climb trees, and fight. He does this solely for himself. One day, the brothers’ family finds a scarlet ibis, but no one is interested in it except for Doodle. After this event, Brother forces Doodle to exert all of the energy he has into physical activities, such as rowing, until he becomes exhausted. At this point, Brother has bottled up so much embarrassment that he begins to run away as far as he can from Doodle. He comes back only to find that what he has already caused cannot be undone. Brother demonstrates a variety of character traits such as pride, embarrassment, and shame.
Brother demonstrates an overwhelming amount of pride toward Doodle. For example, he uses Doodle as his prized possession: “But all of us must have something or someone to be proud of, and Doodle had become mine” (337). Brother uses Doodle’s innocence and fragileness to his own benefit. In this instance, it is revealed that Brother’s pride has taken over his mind. He is determined to make Doodle normal. In fact, he is so obsessed with making his little brother normal that he keeps making Doodle perform tasks where he exerts an excessive amount of energy: “I should have already admitted defeat, but my pride wouldn’t let me” (340). Brother has put in a lot of time trying to make Doodle normal that he cannot stop until he has made his brother normal. He feels that he has put himself through so much that there is no turning back. Brother uses Doodle as his form of his prized possession, so to him, Doodle must be absolutely normal.
Another trait that is prominently displayed by Brother is embarrassment. In one instance, Brother is so embarrassed by Doodle that he teaches how to walk: “When Doodle was five years old, I was embarrassed at having a

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