• Facebook
  • Twitter

If you order your custom term paper from our custom writing service you will receive a perfectly written assignment on Fifth Business ---Character Response---. What we need from you is to provide us with your detailed paper instructions for our experienced writers to follow all of your specific writing requirements. Specify your order details, state the exact number of pages required and our custom writing professionals will deliver the best quality Fifth Business ---Character Response--- paper right on time.

Out staff of freelance writers includes over 120 experts proficient in Fifth Business ---Character Response---, therefore you can rest assured that your assignment will be handled by only top rated specialists. Order your Fifth Business ---Character Response--- paper at affordable prices with !

Fifth Business

---Character Response---

‘Fifth Business’, a book by Robertson Davies, has been written as a memoir of

Dunstable Ramsay. Dunstable Ramsay, renamed to Dunstan, during the course of the


book, is the narrator of this story. He writes this memoir to the Headmaster of the school,

where he was the Assistant Head and Senior History Master before his retirement. But

the memoir is only to be opened after his death, not before that. This information about

the book certainly implies that the content of the book and the way in which the life of

Dunstan and others has been described can be biased to a very great extent.

Dunstan has been observed as a very sincere and stiff person. But the abnormality in

his character does not show up till someone else mentions it to him. This is not to say that

Dunstan hides what was not very normal about him but it shows that during his life there

were others, because of whom Dunstan got a chance to think about his life, his nature and

his personality as a whole. We get to know a lot about him right from the beginning of

the story but a very important instance in his life is when the readers of the story get to

know more about Dunstan in a very straightforward manner. This is when Diana tells

Dunstable to change his name and says, “Why don’t you change it to Dunstan? St.

Dunstan was a marvellous person and very much like you � mad about learning, terribly

stiff and stern and scowly, and an absolute wizard at withstanding temptation.”

(Robertson Davies. -). It clearly states for the readers, that Dunstan is a person who

seeks knowledge, which implies that he must be having deep insight into subjects he

seeks knowledge about, for instance, about saints and their lives. We also know that he

wrote several books on this subject. He is also someone who can easily express himself,

verbally and in writing. He is an expressive person with a great ability to form strong

opinions. This quote by Diana tells us that Dunstan is a stiff and stern person, a man with

proper principles and a person who follows rules at an age of about 0. Something here

can give the readers an indication of the kind of person Dunstan is going to change into

once he grows up. It foreshadows that a person who can have so much mental control at

such a small age, might grow up to be a very mentally-strong individual. He is very good

at withstanding temptation. But the most important fact that this quote reveals to us is that

Dunstan can control his emotions and behavior. At least on the surface, he appears to be a

very composed and strong individual. But the fact that he is still tender in age makes one

wonder what the reason behind his maturity might be. One can easily attribute this to his

days in the army. It must have instilled discipline in him.

Dunstan had always been passively influenced and molded by his life at Deptford, his

family and especially his mother. He has a want of becoming something he might not

have had a chance of becoming if he were to remain at Deptford all his life. But this does

not mean he can run away from what Deptford wanted to make of him. He is loyal to his

friends and people near him. He is secretive in matters concerning anybody. He does not

like to gossip or spread rumors, something that would totally defy what Deptford taught

him. Proper in conduct, he is determined to do what he wants and takes a fancy for. But

he never seems to take a liking to anything that is not expected of a self-righteous and

correct person. He is restrained, but very hard working in what he is supposed to do. Not

extremely ambitious, he is quite frugal in money matters but does seek progress in this

field. Luckily, Boy seems to help him to a very great deal as far his economic status is

concerned. He is a determined fellow who is modest. One of his most significant

character traits is that he is a very responsible person, being able to take upon his mind a

lot of stress due to this. After all, he does maintain that he was solely responsible for

Mary Dempster’s plight if nobody else was to take or share the responsibility.

But all this makes him too much of a proper and correct human being, almost saintly.

It makes him too good to be true. But there is a flaw here. Yes, he is abnormal, not quite

like the normal person. He takes life too seriously. He never lets his inner being come

out. Very restrained, he never shows any impropriety in conduct or behavior. And we

come to know about this when Liesl says to Dunstan, “Why don’t you shake hands with

your devil, Ramsay, and change this foolish life of yours? Why don’t you, just for once,

do something inexplicable, irrational, at the devil’s bidding, and just for the hell of it?

You would be a different man” (Robertson Davies. 6). It shows us that Dunstan always

kept his devil inside him and never let him appear on the surface. It is one of the things

one might not have easily understood, but Dunstan’s soul is pure. Liesl’s last name is the

demon’s name in the play ‘The Vision of Dr. Fautus’, where Faust was a magician who

sold his soul to the devil. Dunstan is nowhere near a magician, but definitely wanted to

become one at a point in time. it is important to remember a this point that it is in the very

presence of Liesl, that Dunstan, for the very first time notices a change in the way he was

behaving. Talking about matters that were supposed to be kept secret or talking loosely

was never his style. But what is there that one might not do in the presence of the ‘Devil’.

He is not in full control of himself and his behavior. Liesl than asks Dunstan, “Who are

you? Where do you fit into poetry and myth? Do you know who I think you are Ramsay?

I think you are Fifth Business” (Robertson Davies. 7). The real purpose of Dunstable

Ramsay in this story is of being a passive recorder of events and facts. His very nature,

the way he grew up and the kind of incidents that shaped his life account for his

motivation to become what he is today. The fact that he never took a liking to what his

hometown had to teach him made him passively rebel against the kind of life he would

have had to live. He becomes a different kind of person. His feeling of being responsible

for Mrs. Dempster’s situation causes him to be like the person he is to a very great extent.

He is a very inspired person and like it has been mentioned before, very considerate and

composed. There is a great deal that could still be said about his character on further

investigation. Dunstan himself is not aware of a lot of things about himself, especially

about his place in the whole story, even though to him it might seem he is.

Percy Boyd Staunton was introduced to us on the very first page of the book. He

remains there throughout, playing a very important part in the story. He has a specific

character of his own, at the same time; he is a personification of the world around him.

As we notice, he is a very materialistic person who lacks the value of spirit and is to a

very great extent quite the opposite of Dunstan. Dunstan introduces Boy to us as his

‘lifelong friend and enemy’, making Boy’s character a very interesting one. As a child,

we see, that Boy is a spoilt brat who is a bad loser and grows up to be a very ambitious

person. He is very successful and progressive person, but only in the field of money and

status. His strength is his sharp mind, which works very well when it comes to money

matters. But he lacks any real inner strength. He is the antagonist in this story and is a

part of various incidents, which lead to his downfall as a man with values and principles.

There are many incidents in the story which contribute towards telling the readers a lot

about Boy’s character, but one of the most important times is when Boy completely

denies his guilt of throwing the ill-fated snowball, which causes the story to take the route

it does. He acts in a very irresponsible manner throughout the play. The first time we see

what a cheap coward Boy is, is when Dunstan narrates to us, “We looked into each

other’s eyes and I knew that he was afraid, and I knew also that he would fight, lie, do

anything rather than admit what I knew. And I didn’t know what in the world I could do

about it” (Robertson Davies. ). He completely denies any responsibility of the bad

incident. He does not care what his friend would feel about the whole thing or how

Dunstan was to deal with it. He does not know how to deal with moral and mental

pressures in life. He is shallow of heart and lacks the depth of character. He does not

concern himself with anything that is of no use to him.

Not caring about people’s feelings is his style and we come to know about this on two

occasions. One is when Boy gives Dunstan film reels to be developed and later Dunstan

finds that the reels contained pictures of Leola in which she is stark naked. After this,

when Dunstan is at Boy’s place, Boy says, “Nice, nice, nice! Of course it isn’t nice! Only

fools worry about what’s nice. Now sit here by me, and Dunny on the other side, and be

proud of what a stunner you are” as a reply to Leo’s repeated pleading to not show the

photos in front of Dunstan (Robertson Davies. 157). It creates a feeling of hatred for Boy,

among the readers. Very inconsiderate, he treats his wife like garbage, some object

without feelings and insults her by being so rude to her in front of their old family friend.

The next time we get an insight into Boy’s character is when, at Christmas, Leo finds a

note in Boy’s clothes that tells her of what Boy has been up to with another woman,

committing adultery? And to this Percy Boyd Staunton says, “‘There’s no reason to carry

on like that…But if you think I intend to be tied down to this sort of thing’ � and he

gestured towards the drawing-room, which was, I must say, a dismal, toy-littered waste

of wealthy, frumpish domesticity � ‘you can think again.’” (Robertson Davies. 186). This

really crowns it all. He takes absolutely no responsibility of what just happened. He does

not think committing adultery is a crime, a moral one more than anything else, but the

fact that he does not even apologize for his wrong deed illustrates a lot about his

character. He says this to Leo in front of their children, scaring them for life. Lost

innocence can never be restored. He leaves his wife, the very person who would do

absolutely anything to be like the person Boy wanted to make her, howling and heart-

broken. Truly cruel and evil, Boy probably deserved what he got in the end.

All his life, Boy only looked for wealth and fame. Being the center of attraction and

dominating situations by any means was his life’s real motive. He wanted to surpass

everything and everybody in the materialistic world. His was the thought that money

could buy anything and was the only base of a life. For him too, Deptford might have

been something in the past, long forgotten and forbidden, but scarcely do people realize,

just how much, the forces that affected them as children, really drive them. Boy enjoyed

his life on the basis of the money and wealth he had amassed. Such achievements,

without the least trace of any humanitarian qualities; what a tragedy that is and this is

exactly the kind of person Boy was. A person with no honor, Boy is a hollow person,

with impure intentions he had lead his life and died, only to be forgotten as a regular rich


Please note that this sample paper on Fifth Business ---Character Response--- is for your review only. In order to eliminate any of the plagiarism issues, it is highly recommended that you do not use it for you own writing purposes. In case you experience difficulties with writing a well structured and accurately composed paper on Fifth Business ---Character Response---, we are here to assist you. Your cheap custom college paper on Fifth Business ---Character Response--- will be written from scratch, so you do not have to worry about its originality.

Order your authentic assignment from and you will be amazed at how easy it is to complete a quality custom paper within the shortest time possible!

Leave a Reply

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.