Is Lulu Lamartine a good person? How and why do her values differ from the other characters in the novel? Is she a sympathetic character? Why or why not?

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Lulu Lamartine is a good person in the sense that she lives with integrity and love. However, being led primarily by love also results in problems for her and leads her to clash with some other characters.

From a young age, Lulu was independent; she even tried to run away from school many times. Eventually, she goes to live on an island with an outcast boy, Moses Pillager. She winds up bonding with Moses and becoming pregnant with his child. Lulu's ability to connect to men and see the kindness in them, even when others do not, speaks to her deep ability to love and continues throughout her life; she has nine children from various fathers. She is a kind and good mother who keeps an orderly and well-run household. However, many of her affairs are adulterous, which leads others to call her a flirt and sexually promiscuous woman. For example, she has an affair with a central character, Nector Kashpaw, while he is married to Marie. But Lulu is never ashamed of her actions, showing that she has integrity. Her strength and integrity are further evidenced in how she fights to keep her home even when the tribal council evicts her due to the fact that her ex-husband had never purchased it.

To understand Lulu, it is essential to remember her time on the island with Moses, in the chapter entitled "The Island." While she does struggle and feel deeply for how she affects people, she uses love and sensuality as a way to experience life more deeply—just like she did with Moses on the island as a young woman. This way of living leads other characters to clash with her, but she continues on living bravely, with love as her deepest motivation. Lulu is a sympathetic character in the sense that everybody can understand love because it is a basic human emotion; everyone can understand its joy and its allure, but we are also familiar with the problems and pain it can bring.

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