Thursday, January 23, 2020

Character Conflicts :: Short Stories Characters Essays

Character Conflicts Throughout many of the short stories that we have read in class, many have had extremely interesting character interactions. These interactions within most of the stories create strong character traits. Also, most of the characters must face a potentially life-changing situation due to the interactions throughout the story. Because of realizations these characters have while exploring their problems, most are able to resolve their conflicts with few regrets and little harm done. Ultimately, whether it is a personal battle or a conflict between two people, the character is usually able to grow stronger and take control of the situation causing the struggle. This allows them to make changes for the better in their life. The Watch is a great example of a story where the character fights an internal conflict, which leaves an extremely difficult decision on his shoulders in the end. As a boy he receives a gold watch for his bar mitzvah, but is forced to give it up when leaving his home that is being terrorized. His family buries their most important possessions in the courtyard behind the house so these items are safe for future recovery as a family. Sadly, the boy loses his entire family in the holocaust, and he describes this when he says, "My teachers, my friends, my guides had all deserted me"(106). Twenty years later he returns to recover the only item left behind from his childhood, the gold watch. The man wants to dig up the watch to help him "exhume not an object but time itself, the soul and memory of that time"(106). I believe this man has an overwhelming sense of loneliness and needs help to remember when his family was there to comfort him in a time of need and sorrow. He starts thinking th at he can tell the watch his problems, and he believes that the watch has "survived for the sole purpose of welcoming [him] on [his] return"(106). The internal conflict comes when he grows angry that he allows himself to return for this prized possession. He feels he stole the watch back, and is "overcome by violent remorse"(107), which I believe is caused by all his family’s items still spread throughout the courtyard. This is like leaving them behind even though they are already gone. He faces his feelings and places the items back into the ground where his rational mind knows it belongs.

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