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Oscar's Loathsome Jelaousy

In: English and Literature

Submitted By busucks
Words 880
Pages 4
Many of the characters in O Pioneers! have very distinctive personalities and

unique traits. For example, Alexandra is a natural leader, and her ambition goes

unmatched; Carl is friendly and determined in many ways; Oscar is a hard worker, in a

sense, but also mentally lacking when it comes to important matters. This is why I have

no compassion for Oscar. From my own life experiences, I believe I have learned many

things about hard work, including what it entails and where it can lead you. Despite the

fact that my upbringing is so very different from Oscar’s, comparisons can definitely be

made between us as people. His distinguishing characteristics are ugly ones, and this

shows as he constantly demeans Alexandra, among others, due to his jealousy and lack of


Oscar grew up on the farm, performing physical labor for hours on end each and

every day. There is no disputing that this is a tough job and not everyone could do it.

But does this alone constitute “hard work?” In my situation, one in which I have had the

privileges of growing up with a guaranteed education and resources to succeed, that is not

quite the whole formula. When I was in high school, if I simply copied words off the

Internet all day long without any comprehension, then handed them in, that was not the

end of the job, and it was certainly not good enough. There is a very large mental

component; those words must mean something in my brain and I must be able to analyze

them in an academic fashion. Hard work also has a component that I like to call “drive.”

This is one’s hunger, initiative, and motivation. Having the will to learn and progress is

an essential key to success, and it is something that Oscar clearly lacks, while

Alexandra’s drive is overflowing.

Alexandra has a connection with the land, a special insight, which allows her to

ultimately prosper on the land that was once thought to be useless. Oscar had initially

disagreed with her, but stuck with it, because she became the leader of the family after

John Bergson died. When the land was thriving and Alexandra became wealthy, Oscar

was jealous and resented her. He was always unappreciative of her, even though he may

have been incredibly poor without the decisions she made. Oscar could never allow

Alexandra to make a decision without imposing his bleak outlook. He showed just how

immature he was when he confronted Alexandra about her relationship with Carl:

“Everybody knows he’s nearly five years younger than you, and is after your money.

Why, Alexandra, you are forty years old! (66)” Although I am only eighteen years old,

the years that have passed I have spent working to get where I am today – Boston

College. And now that I have achieved that much, I don’t simply turn on everyone who

led me here. I look back and thank the people who made it possible, first and foremost,

my parents. Oscar never grew out of his childish, ungrateful ways, and it is so clearly

evident not only in his words, but even his body language. After the tragic death of Emil

at the hands of a drunken Frank Shabata, Oscar blamed Alexandra and would not forgive

her. He would simply ignore her, not understanding that it was not her fault.

As for Alexandra’s relationship with Carl, Oscar hated it, because he could not

face the fact that Alexandra was making her own decisions. It almost seemed as if Oscar

wished failure upon Alexandra’s relationship, because he had trouble making his own

marriage work. Oscar just did not have the heart to accept the fact that Alexandra was

her own person and she was, in fact, the one that made everything on the Divide possible.

He did not have the ability to give credit where it was due. In my everyday life, on a

small scale, this is like writing a bibliography. I cannot write a history essay with a

bunch of facts that I did not previously know and play it off as my own information. I

must indicate where it came from, or whom that information belongs to. Oscar always

had too much pride to do this and it gave people a poor image of him.

The reason I do not feel bad for Oscar is because he was put in a relatively

favorable situation with people who loved him and a fantastic opportunity on the Divide.

However, he always had a complaint about the work or the people or the land. His

jealousy and inability to trust people hurt his moral center and made him appear as a very

judgmental person. Not only from events in my life, but also from other people I have

met, I realize that it is important to make the best out of the situation presented. To be

the best one can possibly be involves many pieces, but the basics should always be there:

appreciation, hard work, and morality. Oscar has shown large flaws in all of these,

whether it be through slacking mentally, talking behind someone’s back, or questioning a

judgment that does not concern him. Oscar’s loathsome personality is certainly the

source of my dislike toward him.…...

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