How do the Souls find kindness in each other in the book The View From Saturday, by Konigsburg?

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Karen P.L. Hardison eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Individuals meet while pursuing their own interests in life and find that they are drawn to each other while through each other they learn about kindness. Mrs. Olinski is the representative protagonist--although there are really several protagonists as the story shifts to encompass individual life journeys--and carries the thread of a journey quest for happiness that leads to finding kindness. Thus while searching for happiness, characters who interact with each other learn to give and receive kindness. An example of how this develops in The View from Saturday is the story of Noah who learns about kindness when he is asked to stand in as best man at a wedding for Margaret and Izzy, whom he didn't know previously. Another example is that of Nadia's story, who is the sister of the groom Izzy and who meets Noah because of his act of kindness related to the wedding.

Nadia is interested in the environmental conditions surrounding turtles, which are facing ecological hardships. Nadia's academic work about and then practical work for saving turtles teaches her about kindness, which gives her understanding and kindness for her own parents, whom she can now relate (in a good way) to turtle parents. A last example is the friendship that forces itself upon the reclusive Ethan as it is proffered by Julian. Julian is good to Ethan and gives him friendship and kindness despite Ethan's reclusive and unfriendly ways. From this, Ethan learns how to relate to a world of people outside himself when he decides to protect Julian from bullies by realizing his own potential for giving kindness to others.

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The View from Saturday

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