The Narrator’s Attitude in The Pugilist at Rest

Satisfactory Essays
The Narrator’s Attitude in The Pugilist at Rest

Webster’s Dictionary defines it as a mental position or the

feeling one has for oneself. In life our attitudes help define who you are

or what you are like. Attitude helps create your personality and how you

would react under certain situations. In “The Pugilist at Rest” Thom Jones

tells us of one man’s attitude and how adversity and a disability changed

his attitude completely. The narrator’s attitude under goes changes from

boot camp, bludgeoning Hey Baby, recon Marine duty and finally obtaining

Dostoyevski’s epilepsy from a boxing match.

The narrator of the story undergoes changes in boot camp that will forever

change his attitude towards life and his fellow Marines. The story begins

by showing a young foolish narrator that only wanted to charge into battle.

The narrator wanted to be all he could be and strived to become the best

United States Marine Corp soldier the United States has to offer. Jones

describes the narrator’s determination and ambitions as, “Whenever danger

appears on the scene, truth and justice will be served as I slip into the

green U.S.M.C. utility uniform and become Earth’s greatest hero.” (485).

The narrator’s attitude would be altered drastically by a motivating speech

that his Sergeant delivered to the boot camp. Jones describes this speech

as, “You men are going off to war, and it’s not a pretty thing,’ etc. &

etc., ‘and if Luke the Gook knocks down one of your buddies, a fellow

Marine, you are going to risk your life and go in and get that Marine and

you are going to bring him out. Not because I said so. No! You are going

after that Marine because you are a Marine, a member of the most elite

fighting force in the world, and that man out thee who’s gone down is a

Marine, and he’s your buddy. He is you brother! Once you are a Marine, you

are always a Marine and you will never let another Marine down.’ Etc. & etc.

‘You can take a Marine out of the Corps but you can’t take the Corps out

of a Marine.’ Etc. & etc. At the time it seemed to me a very good speech,