Don’t Call Me Ishmael


Michael Gerard Bauer

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on Don’t Call Me Ishmael can help.
Barry Bagsley’s mom takes Ishmael totally by surprise when he sees her at the end of school event: she’s beautiful, and she looks kind and engaged with her son’s life. In all ways, she’s nothing like Ishmael expected her to be (cruel, disaffected, or even nonexistent). Seeing her and how normal and nice she looks is part of the reason Ishmael chooses not to humiliate Barry during his prayer reading.

Mrs. Bagsley Quotes in Don’t Call Me Ishmael

The Don’t Call Me Ishmael quotes below are all either spoken by Mrs. Bagsley or refer to Mrs. Bagsley. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Greenwillow Books edition of Don’t Call Me Ishmael published in 2007.
Chapter 45 Quotes

I could tell she was asking if he was alright. It had to be Mrs. Bagsley, but it didn’t seem possible. It was hard enough imagining Barry Bagsley with a mother at all (surely he was thrown together in some dingy rat-infested laboratory) let alone one who looked…well…nice.

Related Characters: Ishmael Leseur (speaker), Barry Bagsley, Mrs. Bagsley
Page Number: 237
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Don’t Call Me Ishmael LitChart as a printable PDF.
Don’t Call Me Ishmael PDF

Mrs. Bagsley Character Timeline in Don’t Call Me Ishmael

The timeline below shows where the character Mrs. Bagsley appears in Don’t Call Me Ishmael. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 46
Bullying and Courage Theme Icon
The Power of Language Theme Icon
Ishmael knows he said he was going to get revenge on Barry Bagsley, but seeing Mrs. Bagsley changed things. Ishmael finds that he can’t deal with how embarrassed and hurt she’d be... (full context)
Chapter 47
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
The Power of Language Theme Icon
As Ishmael and Barry stand and stare at each other, Mrs. Bagsley appears and kindly greets Ishmael. She makes Barry introduce her to his “friend.” Mrs. Bagsley... (full context)