Please give a character sketch of Pamela, the student in love with her teacher in To Sir With Love.Is the fact that she is in love with her teacher the only essence of her character?

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dymatsuoka eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There is far more to Pamela's character than the fact that she is in love with her teacher.  Pamela is first of all intelligent.  In contrast to a number of her classmates, she is a good reader, her voice when reading flowing clearly, "warm and well-modulated...she read(s) easily" (Chapter 6).  Her quick reactions and righteous indignation at the injustices she sees around her, especially but not only as they concern her teacher, also give testimony to a mind that is probing and astute.

Pamela is courageous and bold, unafraid to speak up when she feels that situations she encounters are unfair.  On the way to the museum with her class on their fieldtrip, she challenges two "elderly, well-dressed women" on the train who are making rude insinuations about Mr. Braithwaite, as a black man, accompanying the "shameless young girls" under his care (Chapter 12).  She also berates her classmates for their frequently annoying and insensitive, albeit innocent, questions to their teacher regarding his race (Chapter 14), and takes the lead in overcoming social taboos under which she and her peers have grown up when she volunteers to bring flowers to her classmate Seales' home, even though such an action will invite the censure of her community because Seales is black.  With her fearless initiative, Pamela shows herself to be a real leader, as the entire class, in following her example, joins her in being present at the funeral of Seales' mother (Chapter 20).

Pamela is a beautiful young girl about to blossom into full maturity.  With her intelligence, sensitivity, and courage, there is no doubt that as an adult she will be an individual who will make a difference in the world.