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Reaction on Daddy Long Legs

Essay by   •  December 13, 2013  •  Essay  •  841 Words (4 Pages)  •  2,209 Views

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Daddy Long Legs is a novel by author Jean Webster written on the year 1912. The story tackles the life of Jerusha Abbott or Judy, a name she picked out herself. Jerusha lives in the John Grier Home, an old-fashioned orphanage. Mrs. Lippett, her guardian, said that a certain Trustee was generous enough to give Jerusha a college scholarship. This Trustee already contacted to her teachers and he believed that Jerusha could be an excellent writer in the near future. Jerusha didn't recognize it, but she actually caught a glimpse of the Trustee, which she described as very tall hence the name Daddy Long Legs. Daddy Long Legs' requests are to remain anonymous to Jerusha and to write letters to him regularly to update him about her personal development, but not to except any replies from her Daddy Long Legs.

Jerusha chronicled her life as a college student, noting her transition as a senseless orphan to a well-rounded, successful woman. Her friends, Sallie McBride and Julia Pendleton played important roles in her growth as a person. Sallie is Jerusha's best friend, whereas Julia is her snooty and filthy rich roommate. Great changes occurred as she experienced different things with these two people, including her school community. While reading the novel, you can see the changea in Jerusha in different aspects; may it be social, learning, and personal. Through Daddy Long Legs' help, Jerusha acquired self-confidence. Before she was afraid to be noticed since she is ashamed of her identity being an orphan. She is still traumatized since before she has been laughed at and mocked. But in college she was able to reveal her true self since none of the people there knew that she came from an orphanage.

Jervis Pendleton is also an important character in the novel. He is the uncle of the rich and snobby Julia Pendleton, but his attitude is a total opposite of what her niece is. When they first met, their personalities clicked and complimented each other's. It is later revealed that Daddy Long Legs is Jervis, and is the trustee who is sending her to college. Jerusha also has actually fallen in love with Jervis.

When I finished the novel, I thought that it was weird how Jerusha ended up with someone who she calls "Daddy". It was disturbing for me. Knowing that Jervis is much older than her is a bit unsettling, but Jerusha is of age since she is already in college. Also, I feel like Jervis had a dark side to him, which is exhibited when he shows apparent disagreement to many of Jerusha's wishes. This can be justified by saying that he was just looking out for her, but Jerusha has her own free will. Also, the fact that Daddy Long Legs is sending her through college doesn't make Jerusha his possession. If he's really looking out for her he should have heard and understood her side and understood where she was coming from.

I also didn't like how the story ended, without any

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