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The Character of Soka in Children of the River

In stories of any genre, characters may change dramatically. This holds true for many characters in Children of the River, a story that tells the true nature of change. The most prominent change is evident in the character of Soka. Her character begins as very stubborn and strict and changes to that of a caring person. This essay will explore the true nature of Soka’s behavior.

At the beginning of Children of the River, the story unfolds in Cambodia. Soka has given birth to a baby (who dies later on). A warring faction, named the “Khmer Rouge” have begun to attack the city where the family, and self live. She becomes stubborn, unwilling to leave her home, since she becomes weak. Her stubbornness almost costs her family’s lives. This also leads to a conflict with her husband. Stubbornness can become a very distracting trait in people, as is Soka. However this trait will become less prominent later on during the story.

In the middle of the novel, Soka changes once again somewhat, from being very stubborn to very strict. She shows her strictness mostly towards her teenager niece, Sundara. It is sometimes uncertain of her behavior. She believes very highly of her culture’s customs and beliefs. She thinks the Cambodian way is the only way. Her beliefs get very annoying sometimes, especially towards her niece. These patterns of behavior distances Sundara from her aunt, turning her partially rebellious side towards her family. Soka’s trait keeps the story woven together, and adds a thorny edge to it as well. But this trait changes once again.

The last part of this story is essential to Soka’s last change. She starts to show sympathy towards Sundara’s needs. Albeit, slowly. This change is the most prominent throughout the entire story. What mostly



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