Describe at least one important character in the written text. Explain how this character is revealed to you throughout the text and/or how this character helps you understand an important theme/idea in the novel.
Ricky Baker is an important character throughout the written text. The way his character is revealed in the text is by how he changes throughout different key events that occur once he gets out of social welfare and the urban environment. The most influential events revealed to us that he was a smart and humorous child that had been held back by the inadequate social welfare and education systems. The text also helped me to understand that the social welfare and education systems were not fit for a Fat Maori Boy and only worked for a certain percentage of the child population.
New Zealand’s social welfare care is the only family some children ever know, however, more often than not we see children being forced to fit into a “family” or “way of life” that doesn’t suit them. Barry Crumps book “Wild Pork and Watercress” helped me to understand this idea by portraying that someone like Ricky, a fat Maori boy who has been misunderstood his whole life, doesn’t fit into New Zealand’s ridgid social welfare system. Ricky’s moved from place to place because he cannot live with his Mother and Step-Father which meant he just felt like he never fitted in with families that were not his own. Ricky also struggled with his education. “They shifted me around from class to class, trying to work out where fat Maori boys who can’t play rugby or learn simple stuff fitted in. I knew they had me all wrong, but there wasn’t much I could do about it”. This quote from the opening page of the book shows that Ricky wasn’t happy with how he was treated in school but there wasn’t anyway to change something so ridged.