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Wild Cat Falling

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In the novel “Wild Cat Falling” there are many characters that both entertain and educate the reader. There are many characters that play important roles in the story and contribute to the main characters (Duggan – Referred to as Duggan which is his last name because no first name is stated in the story) experiences that he endures in his life during the course of the novel because the novel is about his life and these characters make it interesting. The characters “Mr. Willy” and the “Noongar Kids” play roles in Duggan’s childhood that affect his upbringing in the world around him and his choice of life. It is for these reasons that the characters in the novel are both entertaining and memorable ones.

“Mr. Willy” and the “Noongar Kids” are memorable characters in the novel because they affect Duggan’s childhood in many ways. “Mr. Willy” is an aboriginal that occasionally takes Duggan out with him to gather firewood for Duggan’s mother and himself, he acts as a father figure in Duggan’s life because Duggan’s own father (a white man) died when he was very young. “You can go off and play, son. Not too far though. I’ll give you a holler at dinner time.”(Ch.3 – Pg. 34) This example shows the role that “Mr. Willy” is trying to play. However “Mr. Willy” will not be closer to Duggan than he already is because Duggan’s mother refuses to marry “Mr. Willy” in fear that she will lose the pension she had to fight for. The “Noongar Kids” are a group of young children that create mischief and don’t go to school. They affect Duggan’s life a lot because they are his peers and whom he tries to belong with. “Making you clean up that la-di-dah house, I s’pose.” (Ch.1 – Pg. 11) This kind of mocking changes Duggan’s perspective of his mother and her rules and is also what may have caused Duggan to steal from the local shop, supposedly he stole to look good in front of the “Noongar Kids” and to get his mother some nice clothes to wear. This mocking and pressure suggests the issues of Duggan’s life of crime.

The roles and functions that the characters “Mr. Willy” and the “Noongar Kids” play are a father figure and his peers. But also when Duggan is older he meets some other people called the “Milk Bar Gang” who then become his peers and push his life of crime even further, from petty theft to grand theft auto thus causing Duggan to be tried, convicted and thrown into gaol. But on some level Duggan didn’t see it as gaol, just a more intensified boys home because if he tried to escape they would find him and bring him back and give him the proper punishment just as in his childhood at the boys home. There is a major similarity between the prison and the boy’s home and the prison warden and the headmaster of the boy’s home. Both of these places and characters caused Duggan to do things to fit in with his surrounding environment at the time or cause him to want to leave that environment as in him trying to escape the boys home (Ch. 7 “” Pgs. 64-67).

The novel “Wild Cat Falling” has many entertaining and memorable characters as described in paragraphs 2 and 3.The characters keep us entertained by the way they view and tolerate Duggan. During the course of the novel Duggan had it rough and bad compared to some of the others of the stolen generation. The stolen generation being the Aborigines and “Half-Breeds” that were forcibly part of the Governments Assimilation program to integrate people into the white community of Australia. Duggan didn’t deal with his life traumas in the best way (Mainly Booze and Alcohol) but he dealt with it in a way that made him feel like all his troubles were so far away that they didn’t matter anymore which explains why he could only have emotionless sex (he could only have emotionless sex because he had a fear of becoming attached to someone again, his fear came from being taken away from his mother by the “welfare people”). To reiterate Duggan’s life has many interesting characters in it, because his life such a classic example of the stolen generation and separation can change a person forever.

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