Examine the role of the main character in the story.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Mr. Braithwaite's role in the story is significant.  Being the main character, it is through his eyes that we understand the world of teaching, of navigating the challenges of racial identity in the modern setting as well as grasping how to find happiness in it.  Mr. Braithwaite's function to guide the reader through this narrative.  He is its focus.  He represents how the challenges of teaching are intense and how important it is to engage in self- reflection when undertaking one's vocation.  His role is to be the prism through which the students understand life and how others around him are inspired by who he is and what he does.  Mr. Braithwaite's function as the main character compels the reader to interpret what he does and then internalize it in accordance to the reader's values.  Essentially, Mr. Braithwaite asks us to analyze what we would have done in his situation and how we would cope with the challenges that he possessed.  In Mr. Braithwaite's role and function as the main character, one recognizes that there is something to be said for passion in one's chosen job and that the journey to this point might be different than originally conceived.  Through his depiction as main character, Mr. Braithwaite represents these elements.

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