Jefferson is a young black man who is at the wrong place at the wrong time. The shootings that takes place at the liquor store have nothing to do with Jefferson. However, since he is at the scene of the crime he was considered to be a suspect. He goes to the liquor store to get something to drink.
Immediately after hearing Jefferson’s execution date, he instantly thought, “ How do people come up with a date and a time to take life from another man? Who made them God” ( Gaines 157)? In disbelief, Grant feels infuriated on how these people are capable of doing this. Therefore, he questions the justice system by pondering to himself, “ Twelve white men say a black man must die, and another white man sets the date and time without consulting one black person. Justice” ( Gaines 157)?
During the chapters 4-6 (pages 24-50), the conflict “man vs. self” was occurring. Grant Wiggins was having a couple conflicts with himself, one of which was whether to visit Jefferson in jail. Grant Wiggins was a school teacher, struggling with the decision whether to stay or escape to another state. Grant is put in an interesting position when his aunt and Miss. Emma, Jefferson’s g-dmother, wants him to visit Jefferson in the cell and educate him.
In despair, he gave in to the sentence and the insult, and acted like a hog in his jail cell, while waiting for the execution date. However, after regular visits by his godmother, the pastor, and Grant, Jefferson realized he needed to bear the weight of his death with dignity not for his sake, but for the sake of the people who cared about him and for the sake of people who were in similar situations. This realization leads to Jefferson accepting his death, and walking to the chair as a man, not as an animal. Due to Jefferson’s actions and his nobility, he not only made and strengthened with his community, but proved a point to the majority who labeled him and others like him as animals rather than people and died at
Grant has gone to a University and is now a teacher in the quarter where he grew up. To his community, Grant is the most educated person in the quarter and is constantly being admired by them. Most of the admiration comes from Miss Emma in hopes that Grant can transform Jefferson into a man before he is executed. Miss Emma states, “I want the teacher visit my boy. I want the teacher make him know he’s not a hog, he’s a man” (pg.
The historical fiction novel A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest J. Gaines, features a falsely accused black man on death row in a small Cajun community during the late 1440s. Grant Wiggins, a college educated teacher of the black community, visits Jefferson in prison, an African American convicted of murder. During his trial, he was given a death sentence while referred as a hog. With the love of his godmother, Miss Emma, who sends Grant to teach him in proving himself a man, Jefferson receives the opportunity of representing his community as he dies. Tante Lou, a close friend of Miss Emma and Grant’s aunt, provides the assurance that Grant would prove Jefferson worthy a human.
The main conflict of the story is Grant convincing Jefferson that he is truly a man and that there is hope in the world. After Jefferson’s sentence is set, Jefferson doesn’t have hope for the world and thinks that he going to die anyways, so why care. Grant is teaching him that he can help others and that there is hope in the world and in the future. So, Grant is using character motivation to help Jefferson throughout the entire novel. The other literary term, diction, is repetition of a word to show its importance.
Jefferson has nothing to live for and is in the jail, while Grant has an exceptional life that includes the church. But as the story goes on, Grant finds a way to reach Jefferson with things such as the radio, and pencil and pad. He displays to Jefferson the true meaning of life as well as he can before it is Jefferson’s time. The contrast of the church and jail ultimately help the two men understand each other
In that period of time frame you no 2nd or 1st person pronouns would be lucky to even have any education. They even argued on Jefferson offensce that he avoid contractions isn’t even smart / intelligent enough to even rob a store. “ a hog in an electric chair” (citation needed; Author’s last name and page #) Is what they referred to Jeff when they decided to give him the death penalty. Black men didn’t have any chance against the justice system back in that time because they were too uneducated to have any defensce for themselves. Jefferson couldn’t even make a statement that could even prove his
This is shown throughout the novel by showing that in the beginning of the novel, Grant wants nothing to do with Jefferson and his situation. As the book continues, he realizes that Jefferson is a human too and that he needs to realize how good he has it compared to some people. In the beginning of A Lesson Before Dying, Grant Wiggins struggles with accepting his responsibilities. This is shown in multiple examples. The two examples used in this paper were when Grant avoids all of his responsibilities and does not want anything to do with Jefferson.
In “A Lesson Before Dying”, there is a tension between how Grant sees himself and how others in his community see him. Grant has gone to a University and is now a teacher in the quarter where he grew up. To his community Grant is the most educated person in the quarter and is constantly being admired by them. Most of the admiration comes from Miss Emma in hopes that Grant can transform Jefferson into a man before he is executed. Miss Emma states, “I want the teacher visit my boy.
“Am I supposed to tell someone how to die who has never lived?” 31 Grant uses an apostrophe to convey the impact of the situation of changing Jefferson from a hog to a man. 15. “We’re teachers, and we have a commitment…. Commitment to what—to live and die in this hellhole, when we can leave and live like other people?”
In multiple letters and notes he wrote he expressed his guilt for the slaves and once the slaves paid off their debt and Jefferson’s he hoped to free them. Jefferson and his slaves remained in debt until the day he died. Jefferson believed that slavery not only deprived blacks of their liberty but had an “unhappy” influence on the masters and their children (Takaki 63). If a master is constantly punishing a slave and cannot restrain, the child’s master will imitate and master it, resulting in a nonstop cycle of slavery.
Jefferson is calm because he now knows that he has a month to live. Before he would act like an animal and eat his grandma’s food off the floor and say things like “Im an old hog” and “I’m going to show you how a old hog eat” (Gaines 83). He even said rude things about Grant’s Girlfriend. In the first few visits his replies were very hostile but now they are more lax.