Speak Up! An Analysis for "Speak" by Laurie Halse Anderson

Essay by PrincessKaedaHigh School, 10th gradeA+, March 2004

download word file, 3 pages 4.3

Downloaded 51 times

Laurie Halse Anderson's novel, Speak, portrays many diverse characters that show different personalities. Each character can support many different themes that are also presented in the novel. Both the characters and theme create an intense and emotional novel for anybody to read.

The main character, Melinda Sordino, is shown to be isolated and disliked as she enters high school. She narrates that she ruined a party with her friends over the summer, so there is reason to why she enters high school with such a low rank. What her "friends" and we readers do not know though, is why she ruined the party. By the end of the novel, we discover that she was raped and called the police, but was afraid to say anything to her friends or family about it.

By keeping her secret about being raped from everyone, this created a flaw for Melinda.

It shows that she is confused, reticent, and humiliated. She talks about wanting to have her friends back, having her normal life back, but she refuses to tell anybody about her secret and that creates anger and hurt feelings to her family and friends.

Similarly, there is Andy Evans. Andy Evans is the student who rapes Melinda. Andy is a senior who does whatever he pleases without considering the consequences and other people's feelings. Andy also ends up dating one of Melinda's ex-friend, and this relationship creates a worse situation between Melinda and her trying to get her friends back.

Andy is more well-known and popular in high school than Melinda is, but his actions of abusing another student create the same flaws as Melinda. He hides his true self that he is ashamed of, or scared of, and on the outside, he does hurtful things. This shows how reticent...