The Water Dancer

by

Ta-Nehisi Coates

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Georgie Parks Character Analysis

Georgie Parks is a widely-respected free black man who lives near Lockless in Freetown. Formerly enslaved, he bought his freedom and married a woman named Amber, with whom he has one baby son. Hiram and Georgie are friends, and Hiram believes Georgie is connected to the “Underground” before he really knows what this is. However, Georgie is secretly working for Ryland’s Hounds and ruthlessly betrays Hiram and Sophia, leading to their capture.

Georgie Parks Quotes in The Water Dancer

The The Water Dancer quotes below are all either spoken by Georgie Parks or refer to Georgie Parks. 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:
Memory vs. Forgetting Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the One World edition of The Water Dancer published in 2019.
Chapter 14 Quotes

The Task was a trap. Even Georgie was trapped. And so who was Corrine Quinn to judge such a man? Who was I, who’d run with no higher purpose save my own passions and my own skin? Now I understood the Underground war. It was not the ancient and honorable kind.

Related Characters: Hiram Walker (speaker), Corrine Quinn, Georgie Parks
Page Number: 176
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire The Water Dancer LitChart as a printable PDF.
The Water Dancer PDF

Georgie Parks Character Timeline in The Water Dancer

The timeline below shows where the character Georgie Parks appears in The Water Dancer. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 4
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
Georgie Parks is a highly respected free black man who, like Big John, had a natural... (full context)
Memory vs. Forgetting Theme Icon
Broken Families Theme Icon
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
At Georgie’s house, Hiram is greeted warmly by Georgie and his wife, Amber. Their newborn son is... (full context)
Broken Families Theme Icon
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
When Hiram comments that Georgie is now “out” of slavery, Georgie replies that no one really gets out, although he... (full context)
Memory vs. Forgetting Theme Icon
Broken Families Theme Icon
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
Hiram leaves, but remains convinced that Georgie is testing him. As he walks through town, he sees items of clothing strewn about,... (full context)
Chapter 6
Memory vs. Forgetting Theme Icon
Broken Families Theme Icon
Stolen Skills, Power, and Knowledge Theme Icon
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
...how Hiram’s grandmother, Santi Bess, walked into the Goose, taking 48 enslaved people with her. Georgie dismisses the story as nonsense, protesting that it is told and re-told every year. According... (full context)
Memory vs. Forgetting Theme Icon
Stolen Skills, Power, and Knowledge Theme Icon
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
Though Hiram agrees with Georgie, others around them are annoyed with how sure of his own correctness Georgie seems to... (full context)
Chapter 7
Memory vs. Forgetting Theme Icon
Broken Families Theme Icon
Stolen Skills, Power, and Knowledge Theme Icon
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
...own ancestry, to a heritage that will never truly be his. He keeps thinking about Georgie and “what he might know.” One Friday, Hiram drives Sophia to Nathaniel’s house as usual.... (full context)
Stolen Skills, Power, and Knowledge Theme Icon
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
...that they must escape. Driving away, he feels more determined than ever to speak to Georgie. He understands that Georgie fears for him, particularly after having seen so many people be... (full context)
Broken Families Theme Icon
Stolen Skills, Power, and Knowledge Theme Icon
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
The next day, Hiram goes to see Georgie, who has a grave air about him. Georgie emphasizes that he likes and admires Hiram,... (full context)
Stolen Skills, Power, and Knowledge Theme Icon
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
Leaving his meeting with Georgie, Hiram passes Amy and Hawkins. Hawkins stops him, asking what brings him to town and... (full context)
Chapter 8
Broken Families Theme Icon
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
When Hiram meets Sophia, he explains that he imagines Georgie can’t really talk about what he knows about escaping, but that he trusts him. Hiram... (full context)
Broken Families Theme Icon
Stolen Skills, Power, and Knowledge Theme Icon
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
The day finally comes when Hiram is due to meet Georgie. In the morning he passes Pete, seeing him for the last time ever. He watches... (full context)
Broken Families Theme Icon
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
When the evening finally comes, Hiram walks with Sophia to meet Georgie. They discuss what they are going to do when they get to the Underground, and... (full context)
Chapter 10
Broken Families Theme Icon
Stolen Skills, Power, and Knowledge Theme Icon
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
...Nathaniel, sent to Natchez, or sold into “the fancy trade.” He remembers the hatred of Georgie that radiated from Sophia, a hatred he also feels himself. In jail, Hiram is forced... (full context)
Chapter 11
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
...is no more than a “word,” whereas the Underground was clearly a myth invented by Georgie. Yet despite everything he has gone through, his desire for freedom remains powerful, and propels... (full context)
Chapter 12
Memory vs. Forgetting Theme Icon
Broken Families Theme Icon
Stolen Skills, Power, and Knowledge Theme Icon
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
...by taking them down into the water is true. Before Santi Bess, the Freetown where Georgie lives didn’t exist. (full context)
Stolen Skills, Power, and Knowledge Theme Icon
Water, Movement, and Freedom Theme Icon
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
Hiram thinks about Georgie and wonders if his wife, Amber, knew about his betrayal. Corrine now hands him a... (full context)
Chapter 14
Broken Families Theme Icon
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
...trust him completely, and in order to test his trustworthiness, she demands “the destruction of Georgie Parks.” She tells Hiram that Georgie has betrayed many others before him. She wants to... (full context)
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
Hiram feels uncertain, but Corrine reminds him that Georgie effectively tried to kill him. Sending people to the South is a fate worse than... (full context)
Chapter 27
Memory vs. Forgetting Theme Icon
Broken Families Theme Icon
Stolen Skills, Power, and Knowledge Theme Icon
Humanity vs. Inhumanity Theme Icon
...Hiram learns that Freetown has been all but totally destroyed. He walks over and finds Georgie’s house burned to the ground; any furniture that remains has been smashed up. He finds... (full context)