Literary Criticism Of A Lesson Before Dying

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A Lesson Before Dying is a book written by Ernest J. Gaines, published in 1993. The book is placed in a small Cajun community in the United States. The story is revolving around two black men, one Jefferson who was sentenced to death for a liquor robbery he had no part in. The other man, Grant Wiggins, who is a teacher trying to help Jefferson become a man before he is sentenced to death. An example of a literary criticism for “A Lesson Before Dying: according to Auger, is that “Grant’s situation is somewhat similar to Jefferson’s in that both he and Jefferson are undergoing a profound change in their own self-perceptions...He [Grant] also finds his own freedom extremely limited, if it indeed exists at all, and he sees the future of his students to be lacking in any promise of advancement.” It is evident that Auger is correct that Jefferson and grant have a similar change within their view in themselves and society, and the perception that Grant is restricted in his freedoms. Grant and Jefferson both go through changes in their personality and how they view their life from realizing and learning what life is really about. Grant, previous to learning more about life, was very hard on his children at school. The children were scared of Grant, to the point that they would cry for doing something wrong. When the children do something he doesn’t like, he would often “bring the wescott down” (36) onto their palms as a punishment. Teachers shouldn’t use this form of punishment
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