Sucker By Carson Mcculler Analysis

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The short story “Sucker” by Carson McCullers portrays the one-sided admiration expressed by the main character’s younger cousin, Richard, towards him, as well as his own towards his crush. McCullers conveys the idea of the story through characterization and irony of the way the main character, Pete’s treatment of Richard, previously referred to as Sucker, parallels the treatment he received from his crush, Maybelle. Pete consistently took advantage of Richard because he was always eager to please his older brother figure, much like Maybelle was only nice to Pete as long as he was useful to her. In the end, after losing both his love interest and the respect of Richard, Pete learns that those who are cruel to others typically do so because they remind them of themselves. Characterization plays a large role in the development of the theme. Pete immediately characterizes Richard as a willing-to-please younger brother type. “And Sucker thought anything I did was…show more content…
Without realizing it until he had been humiliated, Pete acted in the same way in hopes of being accepted by Maybelle that Richard did to him. He seemed to believe that in acting out of unquestioning devotion, he would achieve the same from her, and when she rejected him, out of anger and disappointment, he did the same to the reflection of himself. The characterization of Richard and his change in personality, and the irony of Pete’s unhappy ending portray how people are cruel to those who exhibit their own weaknesses. This also supports the theme of “treat people how you wish to be treated” because someone on both the giving and receiving sides of the spectrum of one-sided admiration can end up in the worst predicament once they lose not only their illusion of happiness, but also the respect they had already been
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