Master Harold And The Boys Master Harold and his Father Master Harold is very similar to his father. Although Harold probably doesn’t want to become like his father, or think like him, he will grow up to be just like his father. When Harold gets involved into arguments, only then does his fathers instincts kick in. Although Harolds father is never in the play, we can learn a lot about him just by Harold and a single phone call. Harold inherited his fathers need for power and control, his racism, hatred, and negative attitude.
Harold likes to be in control. In Harolds family situation, his fathers dominates his mother. For instance when Harolds father made up his mind that he wanted to leave the hospital, and thats just what he did. Even though Harolds mother tried to talk him out of it, she made no difference in the final decision. This could mean that Harolds father is always the one whos in control, and his wife just looks after him and has no say in anything.
In a marriage there shouldnt be domination. Harolds situation is a lot like his fathers. Harold dominates Willie, and Sam. If youre a servant, of course your master is the one in control. But in this situation Willie and Sam are more to Harold than just servants, theyre good friends, and in a friendship there should not be domination.
Harold does take advantage of the fact that he is Sam and Willies master. for example, if there is an argument, then Harold threatens to fire Sam and Willie and always reminds them that he is the one in control. He is just using that as an excuse to win the argument and to prove that hes always right. Now between Harold and his father, his father dominates him easily. Because of this Harold may want to feel like hes somehow in control of something, and thats why he treats Willie and Sam the way he does.
I think Harold loves Willie and Sam, like Harolds father loves his wife, but because Harolds father is in control, Harold wants to feel somehow in control too. Harold is prejudice against black people. Though he may not know it, or might not want to admit it, Harold is racist. This is also another way Harold argues with Willie and Sam. He argues that because Sam is black he doesnt know as much as Harold or cant learn anything to complex. He also argues that he is far too civilized and well mannered to be hanging out with black people who are nothing more than servants.
Then again this just might be another excuse for Harold to win an argument. For instance, Harold deliberately told Sam what he thought was a funny racist joke just to hurt Sams feelings. Now this is a joke that Harold shared with his father, and this is how they spend their time together, making prejudice jokes about black people. Harold became racist because of his father. Their racist jokes are the only thing that brings them together.
They make jokes about people who are less then them so they can feel more dominate in society. Its the only thing Harold knows of to make his father happy. This also means that Harold and his father dont have a close relationship and only know each other through racist jokes. Harold always has a negative attitude towards things. There are few scenes in the play where Harold has a positive and happy attitude. Though Harolds father is never seen in the play, you can tell that hes not a happy person.
Harolds father doesnt really function as a father should, this may have affected Harold. He should spend more time with Harold and try to bring the family closer. If he even attempted this maybe Harold could change his sour attitude about everything. Harold isnt happy because he was never really close to anyone except Sam, and he feels indifferent about it because Sam is black. Harold would be better off if he was under the influence of Sam instead of his father because Sam is more of a father to Harold than his real father.
Even when Harold got mad at his father, Sam looked at the bright side and tried to help Harold forgive his father instead of making matters worse. The bottom line is that Harold should try to become less like his father or he might end up like him. Harold needs to avoid his hunger for control because not everybody is in control of things. There are other ways of feeling better about yourself. For instance loosing an argument, you might learn something. Harold is racist because of his fathers influence. Like father like son. Harold should try to enjoy the last of his days with his father, because he might get to know him better.
This will bring them closer together and make Harold happier. Harold doesnt know or want to admit it, but he is very much like his father. If he stays under the influence of Sam, then I think he will lead on a much favorable life. Harold should also escape the control of his father, stand up for himself. This might help Harold avoid being to much like his father.
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