The Sky Is Gray Characters

Ernest J. Gaines
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Alnest

On one hand, Alnest is little more than an offstage voice, the voice of an old man cautioning Helena, his wife, against the cold. On the other, he is one of only two sympathetic white characters in Gaines's story (Helena is the other). Though the motivation for their careful charity is not described, it is ultimately accepted, the suggestion being that whatever their motivation may be, their small generosity will only be accepted as kindness, not as charity.

Auntie

Like James and James's mother, the source for James's aunt is drawn from Gaines's own experience, modeled after his own great aunt, Augustine Jefferson. Though her presence in "The Sky is Gray" is minimal, Augustine's presence in Gaines's life can hardly be overstated: "Unless you include her," he says, "you can't write about me at all."

Dr. Bassett

Kept completely offstage except for his terrifying effect on Little John...

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This section contains 665 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Sky Is Gray Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
The Sky Is Gray from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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