Brian’s Adaptation in Hatchet by Gary Paulsen

October 21, 2021 by Essay Writer

Gary Paulsen message for the readers is to change and adapt. He changed Brian’s perspective through out the novel regarding the wilderness. At the start of the story we see Brian’s plane crashed into the Canadian woods. Initially, perhaps due to his parent’s divorce we see, Brian sad and obviously scarred because of the plane crash. He is lost and lonely which are the key factors to his trauma. He, at first, hears silence and then learns to identify the sounds of animals and other creatures in the woods. He is hungry but hopeful that he would be found soon.

Paulsen keeps us informed through flashbacks regarding his previous life. One key factor which proves vital for his survival was his English teacher’s advice, ‘ thinking positive, stay on top of things.’ This advice calms him and he starts thinking through his current situation. Brian considered himself lucky since he did had a considerable safe landing given the circumstances. He discovers berries and fresh water to drink. He also finds a shelter. Brian’s gets confident through out the novel. Brian learns to clam himself when he would get scared. In chapter 10, we see, he learns to make fire and makes ‘a wonderful discovery’ to keep mosquitoes and other wild animals away. He learns to adapt to his environment.

With time paulsen shows us that Brian learns new survival skills. He survives a tornado and a moose attack. He make alternative inventions such as the hunting spears, spoon, etc. He focuses more on living and thinks less about him getting rescued. He learns new hunting skills and gets leaner and stronger, mentally and physically. Some might argue that he is still affected by his parents divorce, but we see him paying more attention to his personal growth and stops sulking over his parents divorce and also comes out of the bubble of the rescue mission he had in his mind he had in the beginning.

Towards the end we see him going back to the planes carnage to collect things which will help him survive and find his way out of the wilderness. At this point we see Brain as being well adapt in the wilderness. He is tougher, more informed about the wilderness and capable to take care of himself. He excepts not to be rescued and takes charge of himself to take him home. Ofcourse, ultimately he does get rescued though.

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