Please give the the character sketches of Mr. Florian, Ms. Gillian Blanchard, and Denham in the novel To Sir, with Love.

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

One of the strongest elements in the work is how other characters relate to Mr. Braithwaite.  Since he is the focal point of the work, the central figure and the one to whom our eyes are attracted as the point of narration, we understand much of other characters through him.  Braithwaite is the force of reformation and the power of change through the novel.  The reader gains insight into other through how committed and receptive they are to his message. In this instance, character sketches can be offered by using Braithwaite as a meter stick for other characters.   For example, Mr. Florian is the headmaster of the school, struggling with the idea of trying to inspire these students who have developed such an awful reputation.  He is not against them, but weighs their interests with that of the school which he is running.  Along these lines, ask how he compares with Braitwaite's level of commitment to the students.  Ms. Blanchard is a fellow teacher, so she would be an excellent case study to analyze comparison with Braithwaite.  How does she compare with levels of passion, commitment, and willingness to advocate students?  I think that discussing where she ranks on this scale could yield much in the way of character development.  Denham is a student in Braithwaite's class who occupies much in the way of importance because he leads the opposition against him, so for much of the work, he is seen as an almost- "antagonist" style of character.  In the text, examine what he does to derail Braithwaite's attempts, and how he ends up changing in the course of the work, and your sketch will be complete.