The Chocolate War

by

Robert Cormier

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on The Chocolate War can help.

Jerry’s Father Character Analysis

Jerry’s father is a widower and a pharmacist who keeps odd hours due to his demanding but dull job. Jerry’s father seems to be on autopilot since the death of Jerry’s mother, and is deeply disconnected from his son and the pain Jerry is going through. Jerry is afraid of ending up like his father—moving mindlessly through a life full of “fine” days and boring work.

Jerry’s Father Quotes in The Chocolate War

The The Chocolate War quotes below are all either spoken by Jerry’s Father or refer to Jerry’s Father. 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:
The Individual vs. Society Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Ember edition of The Chocolate War published in 2004.
Chapter 9 Quotes

"Hey, Dad."

"Yes, Jerry?"

"Were things really fine at the store today?"

His father paused near the kitchen doorway, puzzled. “What do you mean, Jerry?"

“I mean, every day I ask you how things are going and every day you say fine. Don't you have some great days? Or rotten days?”

“A drugstore's pretty much the same all the time, Jerry. The prescriptions come in and we fill them—and that’s about it.”

[…]

Was life that dull, that boring and humdrum for people? He hated to think of his own life stretching ahead of him that way, a long succession of days and nights that were fine, fine—not good, not bad, not great, not lousy, not exciting, not anything.

Related Characters: Jerry Renault (speaker), Jerry’s Father (speaker)
Page Number: 60-61
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire The Chocolate War LitChart as a printable PDF.
The Chocolate War PDF

Jerry’s Father Character Timeline in The Chocolate War

The timeline below shows where the character Jerry’s Father appears in The Chocolate War. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 9
The Individual vs. Society Theme Icon
Control vs. Chaos Theme Icon
...left no room for sorrow. In the weeks after his mother’s funeral, Jerry and his father rarely spoke; Jerry’s father moved through their house “like a sleepwalker” and Jerry felt alone... (full context)
Control vs. Chaos Theme Icon
Jerry comes home from school to find his father napping on the sofa in the den of their new apartment. Jerry’s father is a... (full context)
The Individual vs. Society Theme Icon
Control vs. Chaos Theme Icon
Tradition Theme Icon
Jerry, perturbed that every day when he asks his father how his day was his father only answers with “fine,” attempts to dig deeper. He... (full context)
Chapter 18
The Individual vs. Society Theme Icon
Control vs. Chaos Theme Icon
Masculinity, Violence, and Power Theme Icon
Tradition Theme Icon
...to settle down in bed and fall asleep. He worries that he is, like his father, sleeping his life away, fulfilling the prediction of the hippie in the Common, and “missing... (full context)
Chapter 28
The Individual vs. Society Theme Icon
Control vs. Chaos Theme Icon
Masculinity, Violence, and Power Theme Icon
...a dial tone. That night, at eleven, the phone rings again—Jerry figures it is his father, calling from the late shift at the pharmacy. When Jerry answers the phone, though, there... (full context)
The Individual vs. Society Theme Icon
Control vs. Chaos Theme Icon
Masculinity, Violence, and Power Theme Icon
...night, Jerry is awoken in the middle of the night by the phone ringing. His father has answered the phone, and urges Jerry to go back to sleep. Jerry knows that... (full context)
Chapter 32
The Individual vs. Society Theme Icon
Control vs. Chaos Theme Icon
Masculinity, Violence, and Power Theme Icon
...himself up, Jerry rode the bus home and took a warm bath, grateful that his father was working the late shift and would not have to see him in such a... (full context)
The Individual vs. Society Theme Icon
Control vs. Chaos Theme Icon
...Jerry is eating soup at the kitchen table, voices float up to Jerry and his father’s third-floor apartment from the street, calling Jerry to “come out and play.” Jerry carefully looks... (full context)
The Individual vs. Society Theme Icon
Control vs. Chaos Theme Icon
Later that night, at two-thirty in the morning, the telephone rings again. Jerry’s father answers it, echoing Jerry’s earlier thought that allowing the phone to ring just lets the... (full context)