Barn Burning

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Sarty’s sisters Character Analysis

While Lennie faces the difficulties of sharecropping life within the home with quiet determination, Sarty’s sisters deal with their lot with pure passivity. The sisters are described (from Sarty’s perspective) as large, lazy, and “bovine” or cow-like. Dressed in flouncy dresses and tacky ribbons, the girls seem out of place, if not merely irrelevant to the struggles with justice and authority that characterize Sarty’s childhood. Lennie deals with their passivity and unhelpfulness as with any other difficulty: even as their mother, she refrains from trying to mold or change them.
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Sarty’s sisters Character Timeline in Barn Burning

The timeline below shows where the character Sarty’s sisters appears in Barn Burning. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Barn Burning
Resentment, Race, and Prejudice Theme Icon
Aspiration, Desperation, and Defiance Theme Icon
Sarty’s two “hulking” sisters, his mother, and his aunt are waiting for them with their old, run-down pieces of... (full context)
Aspiration, Desperation, and Defiance Theme Icon
...born, ten years ago. The mother and aunt begin to unload the wagon, while one sister says the house probably isn’t fit for hogs. But her father tells her to help... (full context)
Resentment, Race, and Prejudice Theme Icon
Aspiration, Desperation, and Defiance Theme Icon
Loyalty, Family, Blood Theme Icon
...chopping wood while the women of his family are inside preparing food (though not his sisters, who are lazy and idle). Sarty watches the male servant trot by on a horse,... (full context)
Aspiration, Desperation, and Defiance Theme Icon
Independence and Justice Theme Icon
The father begins to shout for his daughters, one of whom drags the rug into the house, and tells the other to set... (full context)
Aspiration, Desperation, and Defiance Theme Icon
Loyalty, Family, Blood Theme Icon
His mother cries at his sister to grab him, but his sister—a twin, we now learn—is too large, slow, and impassive.... (full context)