Question: The Secret River by Kate Grenville
In her “The Secret River” novel, author Kate Grenville describes William Thornhill on an endless quest to achieve autonomy. This autonomy is best explained by Thornhill’s desire to be free from the poverty that has haunted him all his life. For example, a close examination of the character’s troubled life shows that he has endured extreme hardships.
Thornhill has to provide for himself as well as his family despite the shockingly little income that he manages to make. He thus engages in acts of petty theft to make ends meet. As a result, Thornhill is apprehended, tried, and handed a life sentence that is soon reduced to the requirement that the convict spends his remaining days in Australia’s New South Wales region. Once in Australia, Thornhill demonstrates his true and noble intentions away from the troubles back in London. For example, the convict tries as much as possible to avoid engaging in any type of confrontations with the native black residents. In addition, Thornhill strives to acquire his own land that, which would enable him to exercise self-determination. Through such actions, Thornhill demonstrates that he desires to lead a quiet and peaceful life free from unnecessary troubles.
Further, the character has a keen desire to be free from the yoke of poverty that formerly held him back. Grenville thus explores the character’s true identity and inherent peaceful nature.
Throughout “The Secret River” novel, Grenville traces Thornhill’s life history, showing that the character is intrinsically a peaceful and honest individual. The author shows that extreme circumstances have turned Thornhill into a dishonest person. After being brought to Australia, free from London’s hardships, Thornhill demonstrates a love for peace and a desire to exercise self-determination.
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