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Compare and contrast the presentation of Charles Kingshaw and Edmund Hooper in I'm the King of the Castle with Gregory and the narrator in The Half Brothers.

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Introduction

I'm the King of the Castle - Susan Hill The Half Brothers - Elizabeth Gaskell Compare and contrast the presentation of Charles Kingshaw and Edmund Hooper in I'm the King of the Castle with Gregory and the narrator in The Half Brothers. Examine their respective relationships, comment on the behaviour of the adults and explain how it affects the boys and helps influence the outcome of each text. I'm the King of the Castle is a fairly recent novel compared The Half Brothers, a pre 20th century text. The two texts deal with the issues that arise from family relationships. However, I'm the King of the Castle portrays bullying within a family relationship and The Half Brothers portrays jealousy in a family relationship. In I'm the King of the Castle Edmund Hooper, the son of Joseph Hooper who is the owner of Warings shows many similarities with the narrator in The Half Brothers. Both boys are the sons of successful, dominant men who are the heads and owners of their houses. ...read more.

Middle

Mr Hooper however does not display and regret or realisation of his part in the death of Kingshaw, he is oblivious to his part in the suicide. William had taught his son to be mean towards Gregory, and this is reflected in William's actions - the mistreatment of Gregory's dog and of his Gregory was often blamed on others. In the same way, Joseph Hooper tries to shift the blame of him being responsible for his son's lack of love onto others, like his first wife and compares Edmund to her 'he has the same way of not bothering to explain and of making secrets.' Mr Hooper confirms his son is not warm and affectionate. Helena Kingshaw's role helps explain why her son is insecure and unhappy. She is very unaware of how Kingshaw is being treated so Kingshaw withdraws into his isolation, how he 'copes alone' as he has nobody to console him. Despite the events in the novel, she does not have the insight to see her own child's problems and only sees ways of solving her own. ...read more.

Conclusion

She ignores Gregory and is insulting of him 'Stupid, Aunt Fanny used to call it.' Yet Gregory shows no resentment 'and would try to do a kind turn for anyone' his mistreatment by all the people close to his mother and he still gives his life to his half brother because of the love of his dead mother. Gregory speaks to his brother as he comforts him in the snow 'I reckon she sees us now, and belike we shall soon be with her.' However it is too late for his half brother or step father to know why he gives his life. For both boys who lose their lives, they have stirred feelings with their deaths. Kingshaw's death makes the adults seem very self absorbed and keen to comfort the persecutor who shows no remorse, like the adults, even Kingshaw's own mother. Gregory's death provokes remorse and guilt in his stepfather and half brother. Kingshaw's death was because he lacked love, his mother was shallow and blind to her sons feelings. Gregory's death was because his mother loved him so dearly, he showed compassion for his half brother, and was compelled to give his life. Wider Reading Assignment Sophie Turner 11SG 1 ...read more.

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