Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The Power of One Ch 1-3

In the novel, The Power of One by Bryce Courtenay, Pisskop I ridiculed and hated throughout the school he attends. Everyday, Pisskop is beaten by the judge, jury, and Mevrou. On his first day of school at night the judge and jury came to him and forced him to sit naked in the shower and pissed on him. Pisskop knows that he is hated and he knows that it is for two reasons, being a rooinek and bed wetter. He shows that he knows this in this quote, “I was a rooinek and a Pisskop. I spoke the wrong language. And now I was obviously made differently.” Pisskop deals with this bed-wetting problem when he gets home for break. He tells his nanny what happened. She tells Inkosi-Inkosikazi the great medicine man and he agrees to help Pisskop’s “problem.” When he arrives there are many gifts and food waiting for him but he ignores them and gets right to the business of treating Pisskop. Pisskop hopes that when he is treated, then he will not be treated differently than anyone else. He expresses this to us in his thoughts when Nanny tells his story. “…But when Nanny got to the part where my snake had no hat, (why he is called Pisskop) which in my opinion was the most important bit of the lot…” this quote is showing that this is why Pisskop wants to be with Inkosi-Inkosikazi, so he wont be different so in turn he wont be beaten. The lesson that the author most likely wants readers to learn about the nature of human cruelty and prejudice is that it can happen to anyone for any reason. For Pisskop, the reason is that he is a rooinek and all the boys in the judge and jury are Boers so the hate Pisskop for what his forefathers did not for what he did as shown in this quote, ”The Boer War had created great malevolent feelings against the English, who were called rooineks. It was a hate that had entered the Afrikaner bloodstream and pocked the hearts and minds of the next generation.” He is ridiculed constantly and he thinks he is an outcast, but he knows he is special and that he is maybe glad to be different at times.

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