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Summary of Shane - Essay Example

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Name: Course: Tutor: Date: Summary of the novel “Shane” by Jack Schaeffer Jack Schaeffer’s novel “Shane” tells the story of a homesteading family, the Staretts, who happen to meet a mysterious wanderer called Shane. Shane is a slim and muscular skilled gunslinger…
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Download file to see previous pages Initially Shane appears to be strange and dangerous to the narrator Bob Starett. When he appears in the city, he wears a “black hat, boots and a belt”. His dress was a bit different from the rest of the people. Shane’s dresses, composed face and mighty stature are strange enough to grow Bob Starett’s curiosity and fear. Yet Shane is not dangerous. Rather he proves to be helpful to the Starett family, as Joe Starett comments in this regard, “He's dangerous alright. But not to us, my dear…In fact, I don't think you ever had a safer man in your house.” (Schaeffer 23) Indeed Shane possesses a sense of respect for himself and for others. Because of this sense of self-respect and respect for others, he appears to be lovable to the Staretts. He is a hardworking man who will prove his worth by helping the family in need. He is supposed to find a man’s self-respect and value in works. He stays on Joe’s farm with a view to helping him in the oncoming winter. He decides to help Joe because he finds that Joe needs not only help in his farm-works but also protection from other farmers who are trying occupying his land. Thus Shane involves into conflict with Fletcher an aggressive rancher who wants to buy Joe’s land in order to expand his ranch. One day, Shane goes to the town-market to repair their pitchfork. On the way, he meets Chris, one of Fletcher’s men, who attempts to provoke Shane to fight. But Shane remains as calm and cool as possible. He makes fun of how the poor farmers like Shane drink Soda and Shane smells like a pig. From that day, they become a laughing stock around the town. Joe and other farmers who refuse to sell their lands to Fletcher are being taunted by Fletcher’s people. Then, with a view to amend the situation, Shane reaches the town market into town and finds out Chris who invites him to a bar fight and gets beaten severely by Shane. Thus Shane becomes an indispensable part of Joe’s survival struggle by his manliness and courage to confront injustice. Joe and Shane together wither anything wrong –the weeds, the large stump, Fletcher’s greed, etc- from Joe’s land. Obviously the aura of strength, honesty and courage that surround Shane influences Bobby’s psychological growth. Even before reaching their house along with the homesteader, Bobby grows a strong relationship with Shane. He becomes fascinated by Shane’s strong stature, the way he rode on his horse, the courage Shane shows while facing injustice, etc. He finds Shane a role model, of whom every action can inspire him. Shane also shows respect to the young boy. He tried to guide him about how to survive in a world which is full of adversaries. For Bob, Shane is not only a protector and a defense of the weak against the injustice, but also an experienced teacher who opens up the world of experience to the innocent boy. In this regard the narrator comments: “He was a man like father in whom a boy could believe in the simple knowing that what was beyond comprehension was still clean and solid and right” (Schaeffer 79). Bob takes him both as a man and a hero. Despite the heroic aura, Shane establishes himself as a usual man who can grow relationships with other men. Throughout the progress of the novel Bon learns that Shane is the man whom he should follow. Indeed Bob’s growth to maturity is greatly influenced by Shane and his father Joe. In fact, Shane’ ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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