The Son Short Essay - Answer Key

Philipp Meyer
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1. How would you describe the narrative style of the first three chapters of the novel?

The first three chapters have three different narrators. Each of these characters lives and narrates his story from his own time period. The Colonel Eli McCullough appears to be the patriarch of the family. The other narrators are Peter McCullough, Eli’s son, and J.A. McCullough, or “Jeanne,” Eli’s great-granddaughter.

2. What is related about Eli McCullough’s early life in Chapter One? Why do you think this information is important?

McCullough talks about his birth, which happened on the same day that Texas earned its independence from Mexico. This information about the McCulloughs' early years may help to explain why he hates the Mexicans so much, as is evidenced in Peter McCullough’s journal.

3. How is Peter’s relationship with the Garcia family illustrated in Chapter Three?

In his journal, Peter writes about how he has viewed Pedro Garcia as more of a father figure than his own father. Peter enjoys spending time on the Garcia ranch and even considers marrying one of Pedro’s daughters. He does not do so, however, because he knows that his father does not approve of the idea of Texans and Mexicans marrying.

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