Ginny’s Punishment

In class Wednesday, we discussed whether or not Cleome and Zinnia’s treatment of Ginny was deserved, since what they are doing to her is worse than anything she ever did to them.  However, in this most recent section, we learn that Ginny was crueler than she had been letting on.  Because of this switch in perspective at this point in the novel, we get an important revelation of Ginny’s behavior.  For instance, the scar on Zinnia’s face is not mentioned (that I remember…I could have missed this moment earlier, though) until she is talking with Prosper, and she says, “I took up his big hand and ran his long finger down that scar and said, ‘Ginestra Lancaster is the one who gave me that'” (174).  Ginny’s abuse is more severe than we imagined, that being just one example.  Because of this, I started to feel less sympathy for Ginny.

In addition, I think Cleome and Zinnia punish her so much because Ginny never stops Linus.  She never stops him from “visiting” them each night and she never stops his abuse.  Regardless of how much or how little power Ginny has over Linus, she never once attempts to stand up for the girls.  In Wednesday’s class, someone mentioned that she only ever quietly whispers “Stop,” which of course is not audible and does nothing.  Because she remains silent, the girls find her to be incredibly guilty.  Those who do not try to stop evil are just as guilty as those doing the evil.  Based on her treatment in the book (compared to Linus’), her actions (or lack thereof) just might be worse.



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