A Lesson Before Dying Character Analysis

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In the novel A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest J Gaines, Grant is a main character that has a lot of influence over the people in his community. Some might even consider him a hero. I believe that Grant is a hero because he helps Jefferson become a man, changes himself for the better, and wants to continue changing the community. Over the course of the novel, Grant helps Jefferson become the man that he needs to be in order to walk to his death with honor. When Grant first begrudgingly went to visit Jefferson in prison Jefferson was in a really low state. His attorney had just called him a hog, told the judge that Jefferson was not competent enough to be able to plan this theft and murder, and that Jefferson was only someone 's property. …show more content…

There is an immense change in the way Grant acts from the beginning of the book to the end. In the early part of the book Grant was dreading having to go and talk to Jefferson. He really felt as though Jefferson was already too far gone to be convinced that he was actually a man. For the first few visits Grant was accompanied by Miss Emma to the jail to see Jefferson. Which was really the only reason Grant kept going to see Jefferson. Eventually Miss Emma wasn 't able to visit Jefferson with Grant because she had fallen ill. However despite Grants contemplation, he continued to go and visit Jefferson. One of the last times that Grant visits Jefferson he notices that Jefferson had been writing in a journal when he sat down to read it he saw that Jefferson had written “If I ain 't nothing but a hog, how come they just don 't knock me in the head like a hog? Stab me like a hog?...Man walk on two foots; hogs on four hoofs”(220). It was at this point that Grant realized that he could and actually did make a change in the way Jefferson viewed himself. That was also when he realized that he could make a change in his community by doing something similar to what he had been doing with Jefferson. Grant saw that he changed Jefferson and that made Grant believe that he could make a change in his community and in the world around

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