Character and Personality. Evelyn Almonte

11 Apr

Horatio Alger’s Ragged Dick is a clever and amusing fellow with a sparkling personality. His character helps him through the many afflictions he must endure. Although Dick has no living parents and is alone in New York City he manages to downplay his unfortunate fortune. This is possible through the exercise of the immutable intrinsic values which are part of his character. We have a glimpse of these values when Frank tells Dick “You’ve seen hard times, Dick,” and Dick replied “I’ve knowed what it was to be hungry and cold, with nothin’ to eat or to warm me; but there’s one thing I never could do,” he added proudly. “I never stole,” said Dick. “It’s mean and I wouldn’t do it.” (pg 52 & 53). He proceeds to tell Frank about the time he was fainting from hunger and was tempted to steal one loaf of bread but even then he held off and wouldn’t steal. To his surprise the baker offered him to deliver some goods and he took his pay in bread and cakes instead of money. Another prominent quality is Dick’s compassion towards his fellow Boot Blacks. Although he is not wealthy, Dick manages to buy dinner for his friends and to share his bounty when they haven’t made enough money during the day.

But it is Dick’s bubbly personality that allows him to choose to interpret life in a positive way. Obstacles are viewed as temporary and he always has a “good” answer to every question and situation. Making use of positive manipulation of his feelings, Dick turns events to his favor; such is the case when he claims to have slept on Fifth Avenue when he is really sleeping on a cardboard box on the avenue. And when someone asked which tailor he patronized he comically replied “This coat once belonged to General Washington.” (pg.5). Dick’s optimism and positive attitude during hardship are traits inherent to his personality. These traits, combined with the morals and ethics which are part of his character, are the ingredients of a true super hero.

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3 Responses to “Character and Personality. Evelyn Almonte”

  1. ileanacancinos April 11, 2013 at 2:28 pm #

    I definitely agree with your thoughts about Dick being a true super hero because of his traits. he is a great Samaritan and there should be more people like him in this world!

  2. kimberlyspring2013 April 11, 2013 at 5:01 pm #

    I think Ragged Dick juxtaposes greatly with “How Positive Thinking Destroyed the Economy” and I think it’s cool that you touched upon that.

  3. makiaharper April 14, 2013 at 11:30 pm #

    Evelyn,
    What an interesting way of tying in our discussion on manipulation and illustrating how Dick manipulated others in a positive way as a means to win others over drawing from the richness of his character.

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