The Assistant Themes & Characters

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Malamud was an acute observer of the human condition during his career as a writer. Suffering was for him an inescapable part of human existence. He felt that all humans are afflicted with suffering and, therefore, should view each other with deep compassion. Unfortunately, many of the more prosperous humans fail to do this.

Morris Bober's neighbor, Julius Karp, for example, exploits the poor of the area by making great profits in a liquor store. Of no concern to him is the fact that alcohol only increases the misery of the poor.

Morris Bober seems to be a compulsively moral man and his Lincolnesque honesty prevents him from cheating his customers and from adopting business practices that would come naturally to less scrupulous men. His charity to others, which taps his already meager earnings, prevents Bober from realizing the life he wants. His life is one that...

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This section contains 1,024 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Assistant Study Guide
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