There is supporting evidence in “The Scarlet Ibis” by James Hurst to demonstrate the narrator, Doodle’s older brother, exhibits character traits of being both prideful and guilty. In this retrospective look at Doodle’s short life, Brother expresses his guilt about his mean streak that is exposed when he deals with Doodle’s disabilities. His pride often leads to his feelings of guilt.
There is within me (and with sadness I have watched it in others) a knot
of cruelty borne by the stream of love, much as our blood sometimes bears the
seed of our destruction, and at times I was mean to Doodle.
Wanting nothing more than a brother who can participate in a normal boyhood with him, Brother does things to Doodle out of frustration. He pulls Doodle too fast in the wagon, makes him touch his own coffin, and pushes him to the point of exhaustion when trying to teach him new things.
When Doodle is able to accomplish something new, such as learning to walk, Brother takes great pride in it. Brother spends many hours working with Doodle, encouraging him to practice standing, take steps, and finally, walk on his own. Brother admits he is embarrassed about going to school with a brother who cannot walk, which makes his motives questionable. His pride makes him want Doodle to walk, but he gets caught up in the excitement when it happens.
As the story comes to a close, the boys are caught in a storm. As Doodle leaves their small boat, he falls exhaustedly to the ground. Brother allows his pride and frustration to overtake him once again by running ahead of Doodle, leaving him frightened in the storm.
The knowledge that Doodle's and my plans had come to naught was
bitter, and that streak of cruelty within me awakened. I ran as fast as I could,
leaving him far behind with a wall of rain dividing us. The drops stung my face
like nettles, and the wind flared the wet glistening leaves of the bordering trees.
Soon I could hear his voice no more.
Both the exposition and conclusion of the story detail Brother’s feelings of guilt, which are provoked by his pride.