Comparison of Great Expectations and Enders Game
Ender’s game is a book, by Orson Scott Card, about a young boy named Ender who commits his whole childhood to saving the world from a third alien invasion. Great expectations is a story, by Charles Dickens, of a young boy who aspires to become a gentleman and out of all odds he is able to make it into higher society. Both Enders game and Great Expectations tell the story of young boys who strive to become something greater than what they are. Although the story line of each book is different, Pip and Ender are similar in many ways as well.
Both Ender and pips stories start around the time they were six. I believe the authors chose to start it from this point to show how much they develop as a character throughout the books. In the beginning for Great expectations pip is ambitious. At the start of Ender’s game, Ender had not set any true goals for himself. Ender never possessed the optimistic trait that pip had throughout the first part of the novel. The beginning of Pip and Ender as characters shows how different their childhoods are.
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While Ender had a more fortunate childhood in the beginning, with both parents and didn’t have to worry about schooling, Pip did not live with his parents and was raised by his sister who didn’t care if pip ever got a real school experience. Pip and Ender led very different lives in the beginning of each book but they had few similarities that were noticed in the novel. For instance, Ender was bullied by his brother while pip was beaten by his sister. They both had siblings that made their lives at home more difficult.
Even though they have someone in their lives who makes life almost unbearable for them to live, They have someone else who they love and are especially close to them. For Ender it is his sister, Valentine, who always there to understand Ender with her sympathy and caring. Pip’s close friend, Joe, is married to Pip’s sister but always takes pip’s side when she harms him in anyway. Because of Joe’s understanding it created a true bond between Pip and Joe.
Besides their characteristics and family they both experienced a traumatic situation at the beginning of the book with someone who is larger than them. In Enders game, Ender got into a fight with a school bully named Stiltson who intended on killing Ender. In Great expectations Pip is bothered by a convict who threatens to kill him if pip refuses to help him out. The last of the similarities is that both novels start with mental pain or issues the children have with themselves and their families.
In Enders game It first mentions his issue with his brother in the beginning. “And Peter won’t hate me anymore. I’ll come home and show him that the monitor’s gone…. That I’ll just be a normal kid now, like him. ” (Orson Scott card. Ender’s Game, Page 2). In Great expectations Pip thinks about his parents. “As I never saw my father or my mother, and never saw any likeness of either of them… my first fancies regarding what they were like unreasonably derived from their tombstones. ” (Charles Dickens. Great Expectations, Page 1)
A little later on in both novels each boy is presented with an opportunity to change their lives forever. In Ender’s game, Ender was thinking he was done with anything the world government had wanted him to do but they appeared at his doorsteps wanting to take him with them to battle school. “Hard work. Studies, just like school here, except we put you into mathematics and computers much more heavily. Military history. Strategy and tactics. And above all, the Battle Room. ” (Orson Scott card. Ender’s Game, Page 23). In Great Expectations, Mr.
Jaggers offers pip the opportunity to become a gentleman, which is what pip had been wanting for some time. Pip was offered this chance when he was only a young apprentice for Joe. “that he will come into a handsome property. Further, that it is the desire of the present possessor of that property, that he be immediately removed from his present sphere of life and from this place, and be brought up as a gentleman in a word, as a young fellow of great expectations. ” (Charles Dickens. Great Expectations, Page 138-139). Both Ender and pip had different objectives in life.
While Pip was to become successful and gain manners, Ender was on a mission to save the world from destruction. Even with these different paths in life there was still much that made the experiences the same. For example they both left home to succeed at something when they didn’t exactly know what it would be like. They both had to learn more than they already knew. Ender already starts off more successful at his task while Pip has much harder task for himself. Another difference between the two is that Ender has more special abilities.
He isn’t near close to being as normal as pip. Ender has always been smart and can figure out situations quickly where as Pip more acts on impulse and doesn’t learn as fast as Ender. Besides their characteristics they both find the new places unwelcome. Ender sees the battle school as cramped, lonely place. “The ceiling was low- Ender could reach up and touch it. A child sized room , with the bottom bunk resting on the floor…. by letting the others put him in the worst place, he was inviting later bullying. ” (Orson Scott Card. Ender’s Game, Page 38).
Pip sees London as a disgusting and dark place. “Whereas I now found Barnard to be a disembodied spirit, or a fiction, and his inn the dingiest collection of shabby buildings ever squeezed together in a rank corner as a club for tom-cats. ” (Charles Dickens. Great Expectations, Page 170) A difference between the journey is most importantly the setting. Its importance shows that in the 1800’s it took about five hours to travel just twenty miles and the setting of Ender’s game in the future showed that even traveling to space from earth did not take as much time.
Surprisingly, they had even more differences that happen while they are by themselves in the world. Ender moves on to better things at the school he still goes back to his older friends who are not as good as him. Unlike Pip begins to think of himself as being better than others and becomes selfish and stuck up enough to not want to interact with anyone who wasn’t consider in his class. The experience had changed many things about how they felt about themselves and the others they cared about.
Nearing the End of the Novels both boys end their story discovering who they really are and what they have become. Ender advances more and more and shows just how much courage and strength it takes to save the world at the cost of going insane and losing everything he thought he knew. Even with what he accomplished for everyone else he did not feel any victory for himself. This book shows how much manipulation one young child can take before they lose all the hope they’ve ever had for life. How much a single person can break apart with the literal weight of the world on their shoulders.
Throughout Ender’s game, Ender realizes how much of an understanding Ender has with his Enemy. “They weren’t just points of light in the air, they were real ships he had destroyed. ” (Orson Scott Card. Ender’s Game, Page 297). He understands how as much as it was necessary it is to win even at all costs which does not help his struggle for trying to understand and his struggle for survival. In Great Expectations Pip revolved his world around the thought that social class had mattered most. This set people apart and when one was determined to change they ended up with loneliness.
No matter how much Pip had thought being of higher society would improve the way he lived he only wound up realizing that organizing society into different classes is an awful way to separate everyone. Pip also realizes (much like Ender) that the goal he had hoped for and reached did not bring him the happiness he had hoped for. Although Pip was selfish and superficial in the beginning when Magwitch reveals himself Pip is at first upset because he had thought Mrs. Havisham was his benefactor. He begins to respect Magwitch as he learns Magwitch’s history and still refuses to accept money from Magwitch even though Pip is in debt.
Pip fails an attempt to help Magwitch escape and although Magwitch had cost Pip to not become what he had hoped for in the beginning Pip still lets Magwitch know who his daughter is before he died. “She lived and found powerful friends. She is living now. She is a lady and very beautiful. And I love her! ” (Charles Dickens. Great Expectations, Page 465). Both Ender and Pip witness what its like to lose something important. However, when Pip matured he was not selfish and he became just as courageous as Ender all the times he had commanded and won. The difference is that Pip had lost and felt like he had won.
Where Ender had won and felt like he had lost. Each book had its own theme and its own story to tell. Even with its differences it was interesting to compare contrasting stories of various settings and ideas from authors of different times. Ender’s Game and Great Expectations had messages that related to one another. They tell a story from the point of view of boys who grow up and change personalities, thoughts and everything they knew about life. Even with stories that have a lot in them that contrast there was also much about them in comparison.