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Can I get summary of Sue's character in "The Last Leaf" by O. Henry?

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riya-kumar | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 13, 2009 at 1:48 AM via web

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Can I get summary of Sue's character in "The Last Leaf" by O. Henry?

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mrs-campbell | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted August 13, 2009 at 2:20 AM (Answer #1)

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In this short story by O. Henry, Sue is an artist, who lives with Johnsy her roommate.  She is young, and part of the "artist" scene of Greenwich Village, of which O. Henry writes about in a rather mocking tone.  She is independent-minded.  When the doctor inquires if a man is the root of Johnsy's stress, Sue scoffs, “A man?...Is a man worth-" indicating that she and Johnsy don't give men a second thought, but are instead independent women content being on their own.  Sue also has dramatic mood shifts; after the doctor leaves she "cries a Japanese napkin to a pulp," but then immediately cheers up and goes into Johnsy's room, "whistling ragtime" and proceeds to paint to earn some money.

Overall, she is a caring individual, waiting on Johnsy and hoping for her recovery.  She is friendly to the burly Behrman downstairs, even though he makes fun of her and Johnsy for their silly feminine ways.

Overall, Sue is a kind person, although a bit shallow and flaky.  I hope that those thoughts help a bit; good luck!

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