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The Theme Of Friendship In Katherine Paterson's Bridge To Terabithia

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Introduction

Throughout the novel Bridge to Terabithia, Katherine Paterson introduces vivid and unique characters. These characters assist in helping readers identify and understand the themes of friendship, acceptance and imagination and the style of Paterson’s writing help reader’s better understand these themes and the characters within the novel.

Jesse, also known as Jess is the main character in Paterson’s novel. He is the protagonist and the story is told from his point of view. He has a wide range of traits, including the desire to belong, a love for drawing, his sensitivity, kindness and fearfulness as well as being hardworking. Leslie is the second protagonist within the novel, her traits including; being friendly, imaginative,
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131) describe theme in literature as “the idea that holds the story together.” Within a text there may be a range of reasonable themes because “each reader brings to a story a personal past, a present, and plans for the future. These elements shape our responses to the story” (Lukens, Smith & Coffel 2013, p. 135). Throughout Paterson’s novel she explores a range of themes including friendship, accepting difference and imagination. The value of friendship could arguably be the main theme in Paterson’s novel. “It is through friendship that Jess and Leslie are able to accept themselves, feel a sense of belonging, and grow” (Sanderson 2004, p.33). Paterson’s protagonists, Jesse and Lesley are both different to the people around them. Jesse described Lesley as having “no notion of what you did and didn’t do” (Paterson 1997, p.28). Additionally, the theme of imagination can be conveyed throughout the text. Until Lesley arrives in Lark Creek, drawing is Jess’ only imaginative outlet. “But when Leslie arrives, she uses her imagination and encourages Jess to use his, to create a magical new world where the two of them can be themselves and so much more” (Sanderson 2004, p.36). Therefore, as discussed above it is evident through Paterson’s Bridge to Terabithia that themes become apparent through the characters in her…show more content…
Throughout Bridge to Terabithia Paterson uses a variety of verbs to paint a strong and vivid picture in the reader’s mind. This use of verbs helps the reader understand the situation and characters better. Not only does the choice of words enhance the understanding of Paterson’s novel, the use of devices such as similes, imagery and exaggeration also work towards