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Sarty and Abner

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Sarty and Abner Sarty is an illiterate, ten-year-old boy who is fighting an extraordinary internal battle. In Barn Burning, Sarty's father Abner is the person who burns barns. Sarty doesn't know why his father does this but has come to realize it needs to stop, somehow. Abner is what was called a sharecropper. Sharecroppers will work for a plantation owner in exchange for room and board, some of the crops he raises, and sometimes money. Abner has a flagrant disrespect for the plantation owners he works for. ...read more.


Abner and Major de Spain go to court. De Spain wants twenty bushels of corn plus the amount in Abner's contract to repay the damages Abner did to the carpet. Abner thinks that twenty bushels is too much. The judge decides ten would be better. However, Abner is still not happy. When the boys and man return home, Abner begins to gather flammable substances in order to burn Major de Spain's barn down. Sarty is sick of this type of behavior. Even at only ten years old, Sarty knows it is wrong to destroy another persons' property simply because you disagree with them. ...read more.


Sarty does not want to lie anymore. Sarty decides at the last minute before his father burns the barn to run to Major de Spain's home and tell him what his father is going to do. De Spain gets a horse and starts toward the barn. Sarty, however, continues to run past. He decides to leave his family, his father. He stops short when he hears gun shots - one, then two more. I believe, as Sarty does, that Major de Spain killed Abner. After he hears this he begins to cry but also begins, again, to run. Sarty is running to a new life. His new life will be one without lies, and one without anymore fires. ...read more.

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