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A Comparison of Cassie and T.J. in the novel 'Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry'

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Introduction

A Comparison of Cassie and T.J. in the novel 'Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry' The novel, 'Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry,' by Mildred D. Taylor is about the struggle between the blacks and whites, about thirty years after slavery. Set in the 1930's, in the Mississippi, where slavery was very much supported, growing up is harsh for a young black girl. The story is about Cassie, aged nine, growing up learning about the harsh situation, fighting her own personal fights and discovering her feelings about T.J. . Cassie has to persevere by remembering her mothers words: 'every body born this earth is something, and nobody, no matter what colour, is better then anybody else.' Cassie, the main character, tells the story from her own perspective; this helps the reader think like her. She is a mother figure and has a strong sense of her individuality, shown throughout the book. She is loyal, inquisitive, clever and forthright. T.J. , also a main character, is quite different to Cassie; he is disloyal, a cheat, lazy and he talks a lot. His disloyalty is shown especially when he lets others take the blame for his own wrong doing like the cheating incidents. He ,like Cassie, is very clever, but uses it in the wrong way. Both Cassie and T.J. speak in the southern dialect and accent. Cassie does not, and cannot accept the way things are between black folks and white folks. ...read more.

Middle

said. Cassie and her brothers all went against T.J. and stood up for Mama. Cassie also gets jealous- of Miss Wellever's new dress. T.J. accepts the way things are between black folks and white folks. Instead, he uses them to make him seem tough, so he can get more attention and, so he thinks, more friends. This is shown in chapter eight at the end when Cassie and her brothers desert him as a friend and T.J. says: 'got me better friends than y'all! They give me things and treat me like a man and... they white too...'. In chapter ten he comes to church to show off his so called 'friends' hoping for new friends and attention, instead he got less: 'it- it didn't even make no difference,' T.J. says afterwards. T.J. still hangs around with them even though he knows they laugh behind his back. This is because T.J. cannot survive without people around him. I think he is desperate for attention but is going the wrong way about it. To get more attention, he talks a lot and gets all the gossip first. He distributes it very slowly and annoyingly. This is shown throughout the book but an example is in chapter four: 'you see, when a fellows smart like me, he gets to know things that other folks don't. Now this information ain't for the ears of little kids so I really shouldn't even tell y'all...' T.J. is also very clever but he uses it the wrong way and acts on the spur of the moment, out of spite. ...read more.

Conclusion

Cassie is caring and protective, she looks after her family and is a mother figure but T.J., I don't think is very caring and is not very protective about his family. Both Cassie and T.J. are clever but use it in different ways; Cassie uses it in school and to find things out for the reader and knows the difference between right and wrong. She understands peoples feelings but she still has a lot to learn and is protected from the outside world. T.J. , however, uses it to cheat and to get out of his wrong doings. They both are envious except of different things; T.J. is envious of the Logans and Cassie is envious of even better luxuries, new dresses! Overall, I think Cassie accepts T.J. is always going to be part of her life, even though she doesn't like him. I feel annoyed that Cassie's parents don't want to let her understand the real world and I feel they want to protect her too much. Her lack of understanding in this somehow annoys me. Cassie is a very entertaining character to have tell the story and her outspokenness is very interesting to have from a young girl. T.J.'s character makes the reader feel sorry for him and I think he misses Stacey's friendship. His complete acceptance of the situation and his choice of friends frustrate me and the fact that he uses this with the threat of perhaps death frustrates me even more! My favourite character is Cassie because I like her rebellious, defiant, inquisitive, forthright and short tempered personality because it amuses me and is the type of person I, personally like. ...read more.

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