Flowers for Algernon

Charlie Gordon, Coward or Hero? 8th Grade

What defines a "hero" can vary immensely, depending on whom you ask: some heroes can be veterans who fight for their country, while others can just be common citizens who help and save others. But could someone who survives a risky operation have the qualities of a hero? In the short story “Flowers for Algernon” by Daniel Keyes, the main protagonist Charlie Gordon, a thirty-seven year old adult with an I.Q. of sixty-eight, takes a life risking operation to triple his I.Q. After the operation when Charlie realizes the after effects that he will soon have, he grows regretful and suicidal feelings. As a result, he grows increasingly regretful and suicidal feelings. Although Charlie Gordon feels hopeless and suicidal, Charlie Gordon possesses heroic qualities because he has seen his fate through Algernon and chooses to accept his fate. In addition, Charlie has the courage to abandon his past and start again in a new environment just so his friends do not have to feel sorry for him. Even if Charlie Gordon did not directly help anyone, he still possesses the qualities of a hero.

For instance, Charlie Gordon takes part in an operation he does not fully understand, but after, he starts to have suicidal thoughts but Charlie has the...

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