In the military-dystopian novel, Ender’s Game, by Orson Scott Card, Ender, the younger brother of Peter and Valentine, goes through many difficulties during the story. Due to the fact that he still has his monitor residing in his neck, he gets bullied a lot. Most kids his age don’t have their monitors because they are not fit to be accepted as leaders by the government, but because Ender still has his monitor, so he is considered different. Although he is viewed as a weak person because he is bullied, his growing character stood out to me the most. Throughout the book, Ender’s most important character traits that helped him through tough times or just complimented his personality was his persistence, adaptiveness, and his empathy. With these character traits, he grows into a stronger individual, which eventually had a greater effect in the end.
Ender’s persistence allows him to overpower the challenge of isolation throughout his stay at Battle School. His trainer, Colonel Graff, isolates him to avoid distractions including other people so that he will learn how to encourage him to rely on his own strengths and intelligence. The fear stayed, all through dinner as no one sat by him in the mess hall. The other boys were talking about things – the big scoreboard on one wall, the food, the bigger kids. Ender could only watch in isolation.(Card 31) Because of Ender’s persistence, he tries to form allies and build friendships ceaselessly, successfully displaying his persistent personality. They [Shen and Ender] laughed together, and two other launchies joined them. Ender’s isolation was over.(Card 39) Even when Ender joins a brand new group filled with older kids who detest him, he continues to persist and eventually finds a way to train and learn the abilities he needs to achieve success.
Ender Wiggin’s adaptive character personality helps him adapt to a variety of circumstances which allows him to get through many obstacles. At first, he struggles to perform properly without his monitor. However, when he fights Stilson, he proves that he can defend himself without the monitor. Even though there are kids who resent Ender, he is able to learn throughout his stay at Battle School and Command School which clearly portrays his adaptability. Ender manages to work with a brand new team when his teacher transfers him to Salamander Army. even though he’s seen as a competition by the team, particularly its leader Bonzo, thanks to his strong capabilities as a launchy, he’s still able to adapt to his discouraging team, Bonzo’s rules and also the unpleasant surroundings. Since Bonzo had ordered him not to draw his weapon, Ender continued to drift, not moving his head or arms, as if they had been frozen too.(Card 125) As an inexperienced and young member of the Battle school, Ender effectively adapts to being a leader when he’s promoted to lead an army of his own. At the end of the week Dragon Army had fought seven battles in seven days. The score stood 7 wins and 0 losses.(Card 224) Despite the fact that Ender is still very young, colonel Graff exhausts his army by putting them in multiple battles nearly every day. Again, this shows Ender’s adaptability when he has to adapt to different circumstances in order to become a successful leader.
Ender’s empathic abilities are evident throughout the entire book as he communicates with other characters. Near the beginning of the book, when Ender plays Buggers and Astronauts with his brother, he puts himself into the buggers position; making an attempt to sense what they feel, think, and the way they would move. He put on the mask. It closed him in like a hand pressed tight against his face. but this isn’t how it feels a bugger, thought Ender On their home worlds, do the buggers put on human masks, and play?(Card 8) And then in the end, Ender greatly displays his empathy for the buggers. Ender chooses to listen to the Bugger Queen’s words. This is something that no one else would be able to do since the Bugger Queen had attacked earth. From this, Ender learns from the Bugger Queen that they didn’t intend to hurt the human race. In the moment when I truly understand my enemy, understand him well enough to defeat him, then in that very moment I also love him. I think it’s impossible to really understand somebody, what they want, what they believe, and not love them the way they love themselves.(Card 168) With the help of Ender’s empathy, peace is created between the him and the buggers and he starts to appreciate the ones who were once called the “enemy.”
The boy that was once bullied because he was different, became a very independent and developed character. From being a character of no importance, Orson Scott Card shows us Ender’s developed character and his most important traits which includes his persistence, adaptiveness, and his empathy. Throughout the story, Ender was able to get through thick and thin, displaying how much his character grew. If it weren’t for Ender’s persistence, adaptiveness, and empathy, he wouldn’t have made out alive from Battle School and there would’ve also been new problems with the Bugger Queen. These character traits of Ender truly made his character stand out to me in this book, showing me the character development it ended up having.
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