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Lady Runcie Campbell Essay Outline

Essay on The Cone-Gatherers by Robin Jenkins

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The Cone-Gatherers by Robin Jenkins

The Cone Gatherers written by Robin Jenkins covers many topics. The two topics I shall mainly focus on are the eventual insanity of Duror the gamekeeper and also his evil towards Calum and Neil, the two cone gatherers. As I read the book, I discovered that Duror was an evil and disturbed human being who was driven to insanity by his hate towards the cone-gatherers.

The evil inside Duror is the book’s focus, although other themes appear throughout the book. Evil is described in Chapter 8 as “a presence like air, infecting everyone”.

From the start of the book, Duror’s cold evil is made very clear. “Duror the gamekeeper, in an icy sweat of hatred.” This is referring to one of the opening…show more content…

Yet another of Duror’s plans is put into action. He suggests that the cone-gatherers should be used as beaters. She asks if one of them is a ‘cripple’. Although Duror has an immense dislike toward Calum, he replies by saying “He’s a hunchback, but as agile as any monkey.” She rang Mr. Tulloch the overseer of the Ardmore men’s (cone-gatherers) work and he said it should be all right. As Duror was about to leave, the telephone rang. Mr Tulloch was explaining that Calum had certain sensibilities, especially towards the deer drive. Duror, when asked by Lady Runcie-Campbell if Calum and Neil were really needed, he insisted they were so Lady Runcie-Campbell told Mr Tulloch the same.

In Chapter 5, Duror seemed to take great pleasure in telling the cone-gatherers about their necessary attendance of the upcoming deer drive. Neil got very irate about it and said that Duror was deceiving them by trying to get them to do things, that they don’t particularly want to do. Neil knew that Calum was never asked to take part in deer drives because of his particular sensibilities and then accused Duror of deceiving them. “Duror was silent. His triumph was become a handful of withered leaves” He thought that to deliver this “deadly message to them in the eyrie where they fancied themselves safe” would be

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The Cone Gatherers Symbolism Essay

Heather Stewart 6E

Cone Gatherer's symbolism essay

"The Cone Gatherers" by Robin Jenkins is a novel set during World War II. Two brothers Calum and Neil are gathering cones that will replenish the forest which is to be cut down for the war effort, from an estate in Ardmore, Scotland. Lady Runcie-Campbell runs the estate and treats the brothers with contempt as she regards them as being at the very bottom of the social ladder. The game-keeper on the estate, Duror, shows obsessive hatred towards Calum because of his hunch back. Since childhood Duror has loathed anything he finds abnormal. The book is peppered with symbolism, and offers a message of good triumphing over evil through suffering.

The setting of the forest is a microcosm for the world where there are extremes of good and evil particularly at the time in which the novel is set. In chapter 1 of the novel the scene is set on a very idyllic estate,

"For hours the two men had worked in silence there, a hundred feet from the earth, closer, it seemed, to the blue sky round which they had watched the sun slip."

This description reminds the reader of the Garden of Eden and the creation story. The brothers feel safe and at-home up in the trees. It is like a sanctuary from the outside world. Adam and Eve were hope for mankind just as Neil and Calum represent regeneration and hope for life after the war. Duror, embodying darkness, and a parallel for the serpent in the Garden of Eden represents evil and deceitfulness: he is described as

"The overspreading tree of revulsion."

Revulsion is a very powerful word of disgust.

We can see Calum as a Christ like figure because he is innocent and near to flawless in his beliefs and morals. He does not understand why cruelty and suffering exist as part of survival. Calum is very in touch with nature and he is willing to sacrifice himself for what he is which is the ultimate sacrifice, just as Jesus sacrificed himself for us. We see this when Calum jumps onto the deer during the deer hunt, to try and save its life:

"Calum flung himself upon the deer."

At the end of the novel Calum's position in the tree is described:

"His arms were loose and dangled in macabre gestures."

This physical description of Calum hanging from a tree is similar to when Christ was hanging from the Cross. He too gives himself to god for others. Calum's death brings about Duror's destruction, which leads to his suicide. Thus cleanses the wood of his evilness, giving us hope for the future. The two deaths are seen as a new beginning. Calum is also very good at carving little wooden figurines just as Christ was a...

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