The Tragic Life of Hagar Depicted in Margaret Lawrence's The Stone Angel

The Tragic Life of Hagar Depicted in Margaret Lawrence's The Stone Angel

Length: 941 words (2.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

In the novel, The Stone Angel, by Margaret Lawrence, the author constructs the

main character, Hagar, with a deep, unique personality. The journey through Hagar’s life

begins in a cemetery in the summer where the blossoms hanged, the disrespectful wind

blew, and once and a while, the scent of the cowslips would rise. The flowers and

graveyard seem to act as a parallel between the good and bad events of Hagar’s life.

Margaret Lawrence describes the struggles and obstacles this tragic hero has to face

through the mistakes of the past and the problems of the present.

Hagar’s character is very strong because she struggles with emotion with the people around her. We can see this because she tries not to show emotion when her father slaps her hand but didn’t want to let him see her cry. She also refused to hold her dying brother because she didn’t want to show fear and portray her mother, Hagar stated “I can’t, I’m not a bit like her”. Instead of trying to deal with her problems, she runs away from them making her weaker, both physically and mentally. The reader can strongly relate to Hagar’s life problems about aging, marriage, and family disputes because the feelings she expresses are feelings many people experienced. As Hagar escapes her problems, she creates a barrier through her own wall of strength and refuses to let anybody break through it. This barrier represents her free will and the experiences in the past that shapes her current character in the novel.
Hagar’s life is tragic and depressing because of how she was raised and the people she communicated with. Her father was a bad example of a good parent. Deep down, her father most likely wanted Hagar to have a good life, but went too far and did...


... middle of paper ...


...oes Hagar. On her deathbed, she remembers flashbacks of her past and the mistakes she has made, She was too focused on building a strong and proud character when she should have been alive, and open to others.
"I take off my hat - it's hardly suitable for here, anyway, a prim domestic hat sprouting cultivated flowers. Then with considerable care I arrange the jades and copper pieces in my hair. I glance into my purse mirror. The effect is pleasing. They liven up my gray, transform me."
The reader can learn that no matter how far you go or what you do to escape your problems, they will always come back and you will have to face it on your own in order to grow spiritually and mentally. Hagar finally reaches her independence when she accepts Marvin and takes the water into her hands. The tragedy is that when Hagar realizes her mistakes, it’s already too late.


Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Margaret Laurence 's The Stone Angel : Hagar 's Emotional Development Essay

- The Power of Emotions in Margaret Laurence’s The Stone Angel: Hagar’s Emotional Development Some people decide to hide their true feelings on the inside and refuse to allow others to see them express emotions. People can later notice that hiding emotions can have a negative impacts on them. The character Hagar in Margaret Laurence’s The Stone Angel, is someone who keeps her feelings to herself; not allowing others to see how she truly feels or responds in emotional situations. For most of Hagar’s life she holds her feelings to herself, even at times such as the death of her loved ones....   [tags: Emotion, Feeling, Margaret Laurence, Family]

Better Essays
1653 words (4.7 pages)

Essay Analysis of the Character Hagar in Margaret Laurence's The Stone Angel

- An Analysis of the Character Hagar in Margaret Laurence's The Stone Angel The main character in the novel The Stone Angel, by Margaret Laurence, is a character who possesses incredible depth. Hagar is an old women who has never lost her spirit and free will. Hagar is still being faced with obstacles which she must fight to overcome. Since Hagar is a character who is not perfect, the audience is capable of relating to her. The tragic hero through his struggle and the recognition of his own shortcomings reveal man's essential or potential nobility, and we are ennobled, uplifted by the spectacle....   [tags: Stone Angel Essays]

Better Essays
1123 words (3.2 pages)

Tell-Tale Titles Of Margaret Laurence's A Bird In The House Essay

- Margaret Laurence's A Bird in the House is a collection of short stories that is rich in symbols and similes. Descriptions like "claw hand", "flyaway manner" and "hair bound grotesquely like white-fingered wings" are found abundantly in the writer's novel. The Oxford English Dictionary defines symbols as, "something that stands for, represents, or denotes something else (not by exact resemblance, but by vague suggestion, or by some accidental or conventional relation)" (reference). Yet, there is nothing coincidental about Margaret Laurence's diction and her usage of symbols in "A Bird in the House" and "The Mask of the Bear"....   [tags: Margaret Laurence]

Free Essays
995 words (2.8 pages)

Hagar is to Blame for her own Misfurtune in Margaret Lawrence's The Stone Angel

- It is impossible to avoid unpleasant situations throughout an individual’s lifetime, especially if they are a result of bad luck or another combination of events beyond one’s control. Misfortune however can also be self-inflicted. This particular case is apparent in Margaret Lawrence’s The Stone Angel, a novel in which the protagonist, Hagar Shipley’s continuous misfortune is a direct result of several of her character flaws. An exaggerated sense of pride, a lack of compassion and empathy and an inability to communicate clearly are Hagar’s most prominent character flaws, and perpetually bring about misfortune....   [tags: essays research papers]

Free Essays
1049 words (3 pages)

The Symbolism of the Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence Essay

- The Symbolism of the Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence Margaret Laurence's novel, The Stone Angel is a compelling journey of flashbacks seen through the eyes of Hagar Shipley, a ninety year-old woman nearing the end of her life.  In the novel, Margaret Laurence, uses the stone angel to effectively symbolize fictional characters.   The term symbolism in its broadest sense means the use of an object to stand for something other than itself.  In The Stone Angel, Margaret Laurence uses the stone angel to sybmolize the Currie family values and pride and in particular, the pride and cold personality traits of Hagar Shipley.  There are three primary areas where the stone angel is used to symbo...   [tags: Stone Angel Margaret Laurence Essays]

Better Essays
1602 words (4.6 pages)

Essay about Use of Water in Margaret Laurence's The Stone Angel

- Water can symbolize many things throughout the novel. Whether it is in Manawaka, the Pacific Coast or Shadow point, what is constantly recognized in the number of times water is used. If one were to closely examine these situations, they would soon discover it's symbolic importance. In the novel The Stone Angel, water is presented in the many fluctuations, in Hagar's life. Hagar goes through many stages in her life, where water is represented but without it being physically present. Without the imagery of water, the story would be less effective and meaningful for the reader....   [tags: Margaret Laurence]

Better Essays
937 words (2.7 pages)

Face to Face with Death in Hagar Essay

- Face to Face with Death in Hagar As Hagar faces implications of growing old, she starts on a tumultuous journey, not one of her own choice, but one of destiny. She goes through different stages of denial, anger, bargaining, depression and finally acceptance of the fact that death will come, invited or not. At one time every individual is faced with death, horrific to the young, or inviting to the sick and the old. Death is interpreted as the end of existence, but to those who believe in the afterlife, as a whole new chapter of the unknown....   [tags: Hagar Essays]

Free Essays
984 words (2.8 pages)

Margaret Laurence's A Bird in the House Essay

- Margaret Laurence's A Bird in the House Margaret Laurence's A Bird in the House differentiates itself from the four other novels that make up the 'Manawaka series' that has helped establish her as an icon of Canadian literature. It does not present a single story; instead, it is a compilation of eight well-crafted short stories (written between the years 1962 and 1970) that intertwine and combine into a single narrative, working as a whole without losing the essential independence of the parts....   [tags: Laurence A Bird in the House Essays]

Better Essays
2141 words (6.1 pages)

The Loons by Margaret Laurence Essay

- "The Loons" by Margaret Laurence In the short story "The Loons", Margaret Laurence writes the story of Piquette Tonnerre. A half-Indian girl who grows up under harsh circumstances in a society that suppresses half-breeds. The story is told through another girl, Vanessa, who comes in contact with Piquette through her father. As the title suggests the story also includes a special type of birds, the loons, and we can see an obvious comparison between the loons and Piquette....   [tags: Laurence Loons Essays]

Free Essays
520 words (1.5 pages)

The Character of Hagar in The Stone Angel Essay

- The Character of Hagar in The Stone Angel Death is a subject that everyone fears because they associate death with their end and not a new beginning. In The Stone Angel, by Margaret Laurence, Hagar is no different. When she faces the reality of the implications of growing old she is faced with a journey, not one of her choice but one of destiny. Through her journey Hagar goes through the five different stages leading up towards death: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and finally acceptance....   [tags: Stone Angel]

Better Essays
1407 words (4 pages)