Fly Away Peter Character Analysis

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David Malouf's Fly Away Peter explores the conflicting natures of good and evil in Man through Jim's personal journey, from Ashley's peaceful sanctuary into the frontlines of war. Malouf focuses on Jim's thoughts in particular to question his understanding of human nature, the world and his place in it. As the novel progresses, Jim's loss of innocence is charted as he plunges into a brutal world of war from his sacred haven in the sanctuary and comes to acknowledge Man's capacity to be both good and evil. Jim discovers a darker side of himself and a potential for violence when he faces Wizzer's bullying, even though he has always been consciously rejecting any notions of violence. Before the arrival of the war, Jim detests the bitter outlook and "resent[s] the cowardly acceptance of defeat" of his father and firmly…show more content…
He visits Eric in hospital out of respect for Clancy and also because he knows no one else will, seeing as Eric is an orphan. Jim is torn between sympathy for him and the growing unease from the young victim's "monstrous" questions as he is aware of his inability to be of any help. Jim begins to critically view "the structure of the world they lived in" and the "responsibility [the government] could be expected to assume". The soldiers fighting in the war have made an extraordinary sacrifice without any form of social security or government schemes and Jim sees the awaiting fates of young victims like Eric, bleak and unpromising. He cries later for the countless lives ruined by war who, like Eric, "asked for little, and [had] been given less and [will spend their lives] demanding [their] due". He understands that they have nothing to live for now and is upset at these injustices of war. Therefore, Jim exemplifies Man's capacity to be good from his compassion towards Eric and other

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