Roger’s Actions Thank You M'am: Character Analysis

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Roger just wanted new shoes. Thank you ma’am by Langston Hughes is a short story about a kid trying to steal money to try and buy shoes. After he was caught the lady decided to wash him up and get him the shoes he wanted the whole time. She also made sure he was fed and made somewhat rested. Therefore, Roger is brave, desperate, and neglected.

Roger is brave because he tried to steal a purse on the street in the open with other people nearby. “When a boy ran up behind her and tried to snatch her purse” (Hughes, Page 1) This was Roger trying to get the purse which he knew the consequences of getting caught but still tried anyways. He knew this but he couldn’t predict the weight of the bag which is why he failed and was caught. Another time he was brave was when he was at Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones’ house. “He could make a dash for it down the hall. He could run, run, run, run!” (Hughes, Page 2) This shows that he was brave to stay inside someone else’s house where they could do anything to you instead of running which could have been the wrong choice but it wasn’t. This all shows Roger is Brave

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Roger is desperate because he attempted to get new shoes and tried to get away too but couldn’t. For instance, when he was trying to get money for the shoes he wanted and attempted to steal from Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones. “I wanted a pair of blue suede shoes” (Hughes, Page 2). Desperate people won’t wait to save money and buy what they want They will try and take the fastest route to getting what they want, like Roger stealing money was his fastest option other than directly stealing the shoes. Another time that Roger was desperate was when Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones was having him eat food and he was staying which showed he wanted the food and was desperate for it. “As they ate, she told him about her job” (Hughes, Page 4) this shows that Roger was more than likely listening to her talk about her job and was eating in silence. Usually when some eats in silence they are desperate to eat that food. This demonstrates that Roger is desperate.

A third character trait that Roger has is neglected. One way Roger displayed this character trait is by him having a dirty face. “Then, Roger you go to that sink and wash your face,” (Hughes, Page 2). When your face is dirty there is no one that cares enough about you that lives with you. Another reason is face could be dirty is that he lives alone or on the streets and is always trying to get money instead of worrying about washing his face. A second way that Roger is neglected is that he doesn’t have anyone at home. “There’s nobody at my house,” (Hughes, Page 2) This was Roger saying this which is a fact because he said and obviously no one else and he lives at his own house. When you are neglected no one is at your house because they don’t care about you or the house. So, simply Roger is Neglected.

To summarize Roger is brave, desperate and neglected. One instance that he was brave in was when he attempted to steal Mrs. Luella Bates Washington’s purse. An example of Roger being desperate was when he was eating the food he had gotten and ate it silently because ehe was desperate for the food. One way Roger was neglected is when he said there was no one at his house. In the future Roger will not try to steal again and will try to stay clean and find ways to make money and get fed. Plus, Roger will respect people for their kindness and resilience.


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