An analysis of the novel the red pony by john steinbeck
The red pony setting
We respond sympathetically to a young boy who is facing a great loss for the first time and who is discovering that neither his parents nor a close friend can prevent what has happened. The old cow-hand is usually already there and it is with the help of Billy Buck's vast knowledge about horses that Jody learns practical tactics about caring for and disciplining a horse. Jody was proud then, for he knew that was the way to judge a horse. For the unappreciative Carl Tiflin, "westering" is simply something "done" and over with that should be "forgotten" The last time that Billy Buck said things would be fine Galiban died. This is unnatural. Death itself would have been easy and quick, but Jody and Billy Buck try to defy the natural course of matters.
His last wish is to remain on the farm until he dies, but the stern Carl Tiflin refuses, leaving the man without his hopes.
And Steinbeck adds, "… for some reason [he] was proud to have them come. He insensitively jokes about putting Gitano out to pasture like his old horse, Easter. Eventually his father and Billy Buck arrive on the scene and pull him off the dead bird.
The red pony by john steinbeck full book
In comparison to Billy Buck, Carl Tiflin is brash and unsympathetic. His cheeks were growing tight and gray. Jody's earlier sensing "an uncertainty in the air" was valid; the following morning at breakfast, Billy Buck does not look at Jody and that his father speaks to his son crossly. By coping with Gabilan's magical metamorphosis of an ordinary farm life into a new world of wonder and mystery and then being savagely severed from that world, Gabilan becomes one tool of many tools that Jody will use and fashion on his journey to adulthood. Likewise, it is through other animals that populate this book that Jody also learns about sex, old age, sickness, and birth. Jody becomes over-protective of Gabilan. But while Jody is at school Galiban is left out in the pasture in the middle of a rain storm. Something has happened, Jody is sure, after his father commands him to "come with us after breakfast. For Grandfather, and others like him of his generation, however, "westering" was the defining motivation of their entire lives. Suddenly, an old Mexican man named Gitano appears, claiming he was born on the ranch. His father is visibly annoyed by old Gitano's presence at the ranch and tells him, "Old things ought to be put out of their misery" Jody is sent with Nellie, a mare, to have her bred. When the time for the birth comes, complications spring up. Be aware, for instance, that after the old cows disappear over the hill toward the butcher that Jody notices his two dogs, one of which has lost an ear in a battle with a coyote, the remaining ear stands higher, as a result. In the second, he learns that he can better sympathize with a stranger than his mature, grown-up father can, and that he has a desire to explore that his father doesn't understand.
He feels bound to give Jody the colt he wanted so badly, even if it means the death of Nellie. The central character in the opening scene, however, is not Jody Tiflin, nor his parents.
Steinbeck writes, "[…] Jody new one thing more sharply than he had ever known anything.
By then end of the story cycle, however, he has learned what it means to be a grown man through his experiences with death. For Grandfather the Westering was the greatest thing that humankind ever did, and the fact that he was able to be a part of it, in fact at the head of it, fills his waking thoughts and night dreams.
It is merely another part of Carl's code of discipline and Billy Buck's common sense; it is as natural as responding to his mother's clanging of the breakfast triangle.
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