Crabbe William Bell Essays

SuperSummary, a modern alternative to SparkNotes and CliffsNotes, offers high-quality study guides for challenging works of literature. This 45-page guide for “Crabbe” by William Bell includes detailed chapter summaries and analysis covering 21 chapters, as well as several more in-depth sections of expert-written literary analysis. Featured content includes commentary on major characters, 25 important quotes, essay topics, and key themes like The Quest for Identity and Autonomy and The Relationship between Humanity and Nature.

Plot Summary

Crabbe is the story of Franklin Crabbe, an eighteen-year old native of Toronto who struggles with the conventional expectations of his affluent parents and teachers.  Highly intelligent but riddled with resentment and anxiety, Crabbe (as he prefers to be called) decides torun away to the Canadian wilderness. Once in the wilderness, the inexperienced Crabbe encounters a series of life-threatening challenges that he overcomes only with the help of another fugitive, Mary Pallas, and the lessons of self-sufficiency she teaches him. Crabbe is ultimately forced to leave the wilderness by winter but not before he learns that who he is rests in his own hands. Told primarily in a series of journal entries that span the months leading up to his decision to leave through his return to the city, this young adult novel is a coming-of-age narrative that includes elements of adventure narrative. The narrative structure also reflects the influence of Joseph Campbell’s account of the hero’s journey, in which the hero leaves home, meets a mentor, faces a test, and returns home after overcoming the final ordeal.

At the start of the novel, Crabbe is a patient in Bartholomew’s General Hospital. Despite his refusal to share with his psychiatrist how he came to be there, Crabbe decides to keep a journal to help him make sense of his experiences. The remainder of the narrative is told via flashbacks in the form of journal entries and several chapters, identified as digressions, that are set in the present.

Crabbe recounts his discontent with his life during the early spring of his senior year and the surreptitious preparations he made to prepare for his escape from everyone’s expectations that he would go to university and live a life like his father’s. He heads north for the wilderness one night, intending to stay at a remote campsite that he visited years before, while on an uncomfortable trip with his father.

Crabbe escapes an attack by a black bear attracted by his careless handling of food at his campsite on the first night. He then almost drowns the next day, after he accidentally plunges down some falls on the river. Mary Pallas, a beautiful woman who is also hiding in the wilderness, rescues him and nurses him back to health in her hidden camp. Despite her willingness to assist him, she refuses to reveal her name to him.

Over the summer, Mary teaches Crabbe the skills he needs to survive in the wilderness. Crabbe grows confident in his survival skills and falls in love with Mary, a feeling she does not return.

As winter approaches, Mary tells Crabbe that it is time for him to leave the wilderness. They plan for him to leave after a raid on a nearby campground that has supplies Mary needs to survive the winter. The raid ends in disaster when Mary is discovered by four drunken, rough-looking men at the campground. The men drag Mary into their compound. Crabbe rescues Mary, but as they run away from the men, it becomes clear that Mary is deeply shaken by her experiences. She dies on her way back to their campsite, and Crabbe returns on his own.

Back at Mary’s camp, Crabbe discovers details about Mary’s life by going through the contents of the pack she forbade him to look at that summer. After reviewing the materials in the pack, Crabbe guesses that Mary hid in the wilderness to escape prosecution for the mercy killing of her husband, an action that was illegal in Canada at the time. He burns the contents of the pack and then sets out to return to civilization.

Unfortunately for him, his journey is impeded by a blizzard and he suffers frostbite as a result. On the main road, he is rescued by a driver who takes him to a small clinic to treat his frostbite. When Crabbe awakens several days later, the doctor has amputated two of his fingers and Crabbe has double pneumonia.

He is transferred to St. Bartholomew’s Hospital in his hometown of Toronto, where he is eventually reunited with his parents during a tense meeting. He leaves the hospital after his physical recovery, and takes a job in a sheet metal factory as a janitor to earn money. The narrative comes full circle when Crabbe takes a job at a wilderness camp for troubled teens.

William Bell’s Novel Crabbe: How Crabbe Finds Pride In His Pilgrimage

Overcoming obstacles in one’s life can lead someone along the path of ultimately taking pride in themselves. This is apparent in William Bell’s novel Crabbe, in the case of young Franklin Crabbe. Firstly, Crabbe’s ordeal in nature teaches him to put others before himself. At the beginning of his journey, he is self-centred whilst making decisions, whereas at the end of his journey, he is able to consider others first. Secondly, during Crabbe’s time in the wilderness, he gains self-satisfaction from hard work. Crabbe learns about how good it feels to accomplish something in his waking hours, and continues to realize this after his encounter with nature. Lastly, throughout Crabbe’s time in the wilderness, he learns to take responsibility for his own unhappiness. In his bounty of moments for reflection, Crabbe realizes his parents are not to blame for his every moment of depression. During Crabbe’s journey in the bush, he overcomes frequent obstacles which send him back to civilization as someone he can be proud of.
To begin, Crabbe’s expedition teaches him to put the needs and emotions of others before his own. In the primitive stages of his trek, Mary saves Crabbe after he takes a death defying plunge from the waterfall. Crabbe quickly realizes he would not have done the same for anyone in need. Because of this he “followed her, ashamed” (85). This action validates that before Crabbe had his full experience in the outdoors he only valued himself. Since Crabbe can say with certainty that he would not have helped someone in such a desperate situation, he proves that he

has not yet developed the trait of selflessness. Later on in the heroin’s journey, Crabbe and Mary find themselves at a hunt lodge. Crabbe does all that he is capable of to rescue Mary from a desperate situation, even though he “couldn’t be more scared” (125). Crabbe’s courageous endeavor proves that after Crabbe has faces the many challenges of nature, he does not hesitate to put himself second to others. Crabbe risks his life when Mary is in the face of danger, and he does it without reluctance. Crabbe would not have done in the beginning of his journey. Next, when Crabbe has finished his ordeal with nature, he sees his parents for the first time. They look sad, tired and disheveled and Crabbe says, “I wept for the guilt I had caused them to feel” (180). Crabbe’s emotional state symbolises his coming full circle in his ability to put others first. Before his journey begins, Crabbe has no sympathy for his parents. He thinks that they deserve the trauma of losing him. After his journey, he is able to understand how difficult this must have been for them. Crabbe would not have had this kind of empathy before his adventure. Pride and shame are without a doubt opposite emotions. Someone who is proud would believe they are living life the right way. However, someone with shame in their heart believes that they are living a life which should not be advertised; a life which is...

Loading: Checking Spelling


Read more

Irony in the novel "Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen

1145 words - 5 pages "It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife".(pg.1) The first sentence of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice is perhaps the most famous opening of all English comedies concerning social manners. It encapsulates the ambitions of the empty headed Mrs. Bennet, and her desire to find a good match for each of her five daughters from the middle-class young men of the family's...

How Does William Blake convey his anger in the poem London ?

1370 words - 5 pages How Does William Blake convey his anger in the poem London ? The poem 'London' by William Blake, relfects his feelings upon the society that he was living in , and how despreratly it needed help. Blake thought that all of the poverty and misfortune that was happening on the streets were caused by the political opression in London. Blake was angered by what he saw in his homeland as other countries started fighting for their indipendence...

How Remarque presents the Reader with the Brutality of War in his Novel "All Quiet on the Western Front"

1183 words - 5 pages In his novel "All Quiet On The Western Front"- first published in German as Im Westen nichts Neues in January 1929 - German Author Erich Maria Remarque purposefully destroys the nationalistic ideas readers at the time would have had about...

Predatory Men in William Faulkner’s Novel, Sanctuary

675 words - 3 pages Predatory Men in William Faulkner’s Novel, Sanctuary William Faulkner’s novel, Sanctuary, is replete with subtlety and symbolism. En route to Old Frenchman’s Place, Temple Drake thinks of baseball players in the Saturday game she is missing as “crouching, uttering short, yelping cries like marsh-fowl disturbed by an alligator, not certain of where the danger is, motionless, poised” (37). In creating such an image of predation, Faulkner...

Analyse the passage from Charlotte Bronte's "Jane Eyre" in which Jane finds herself locked within the Red Room at Gateshead Hall, explaining its relevance to the structure of the novel as a whole.

1839 words - 7 pages Throughout the course of this essay I will be examining an extract from the second chapter of Charlotte Bront¸'s 'Jane Eyre' in which Jane finds herself locked in the Red Room. I will be looking closely at the relevance of this passage to the structure of the novel overall, paying close attention to the narrative devices used.The novel is a fictional autobiography comprising a first-person narrative, which allows the reader to see...

How is Kenneth Slessor effective in conveying his thoughts and ideas? (William Street, Country Towns, Beach Burial, Night-Ride)

1290 words - 5 pages Poets use many techniques to convey their thoughts and purpose in their poetry. In this case, Kenneth Slessor's poetry will be analysed to show his effectiveness. William Street is a poem which discusses about the beauty and ugliness of the red light district. Country Towns, in contrast, romanticizes the country and its sleepy atmosphere. In addition, Night-Ride is also...

William Shakespeare Objectifies Love in his Plays

1837 words - 7 pages William Shakespeare is known widely for his plays that dabble in comedy, tragedy, and most importantly, romance. Many of his plays incorporate more than one of these motifs. Throughout Shakespeare's plays, the characters and their dialogue give way to a cynical perspective on societal standards and views about love. In Twelfth Night, Shakespeare derides the societal conceptions of love and chastises the ideals and yearnings of the members of the...

Richard Adam's use of mythology in his novel "Watership Down"

1148 words - 5 pages Throughout history there have been many occasions where mythology has been used. Also, there are many different forms of mythology. Such forms as Greek mythology and many people also see the bible and the stories in it as a form of mythology. In this essay the significance of Richard Adam's use of mythology in his novel Watership Down will be interpreted. This...

'His bundle of names links all our little band of men together': How one man relates to another in the novel of "Dracula"

1900 words - 8 pages In the last note of "Dracula", Jonathan Harker describes his son as the union of the men who defeated the horrible vampire. Is this union an amicable one, merely taking in consideration the adventures they had together; or did Stoker refer to some other meaning of bond when writing this sentence, and many other utterances as well? In order to give a satisfactory...

Show how Austen within the room of "two inches of ivory" creates her novel "Pride and Prejudice".

1203 words - 5 pages Jane Austen was extremely modest about her genius, describing her work to her work to her nephew Edward as"That little but (two inches wide) of ivory in which I work with so fine a brush as produces little effect after much labour."Although the world of her novel "Pride and Prejudice" is confined to a small section of society comprising of country-gentry...

How does Austen present the relationship between Darcy and Elizabeth? Novel : Pride and Prejudice By Jane Austen

643 words - 3 pages How does Austen present the relationship between Darcy and Elizabeth?Awareness of social status is a central theme of the novel. The “pride and prejudice” of both Darcy and Lizzy, and the strong-willed stubbornness of their characters make them an unlikely match. However, Austen begins to show how, despite “the inferiority of her connections”; Lizzy’s superior intellectuality makes her an ideal companion for...

0 thoughts on “Crabbe William Bell Essays”


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *