Read an in-depth analysis of Richard Parker.
Life of Pi
Artboard Created with Sketch. Themes Motifs Symbols Key Facts. Characters Character List. Piscine is the narrator for most of the novel, and his account of his seven months at sea forms the bulk of the story.
He gets his unusual name from the French word for pool —and, more specifically, from a pool in Paris in which a close family friend, Francis Adirubasamy, loved to swim. A student of zoology and religion, Pi is deeply intrigued by the habits and characteristics of animals and people.
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His captor, Richard Parker, named him Thirsty, but a shipping clerk made a mistake and reversed their names. From then on, at the Pondicherry Zoo, he was known as Richard Parker.
Weighing pounds and about nine feet long, he kills the hyena on the lifeboat and the blind cannibal.
He taught Pi to swim as a child and bestowed upon him his unusual moniker. He arranges for the author to meet Pi in person, so as to get a first-person account of his strange and compelling tale. Pi calls him Mamaji, an Indian term that means respected uncle.
Ravi prefers sports to schoolwork and is quite popular. He teases his younger brother mercilessly over his devotion to three religions. He once owned a Madras hotel, but because of his deep interest in animals decided to run the Pondicherry Zoo.
A worrier by nature, he teaches his sons not only to care for and control wild animals, but to fear them. The difficult conditions in India lead him to move his family to Canada.
A book lover, she encourages Pi to read widely. She speaks her mind, letting her husband know when she disagrees with his parenting techniques.
When Pi relates another version of his story to his rescuers, she takes the place of Orange Juice on the lifeboat. A polio survivor, he is an odd-looking man, with a body shaped like a triangle.
His devotion to the power of scientific inquiry and explanation inspires Pi to study zoology in college. He preaches a message of love.
He, the Muslim Mr. Kumar, and the Hindu pandit disagree about whose religion Pi should practice. He works in a bakery.
Like the other Mr. Never given a name, he is outraged when Pi, who was raised Hindu, begins practicing other religions. He plays baseball. She is shy but very close to her father.
He controls the lifeboat before Richard Parker emerges.
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He breaks his leg jumping into the lifeboat. The hyena torments him and eats him alive. She suffers almost humanlike bouts of loneliness and seasickness. When the hyena attacks her, she fights back valiantly but is nonetheless killed and decapitated.
Driven by hunger and desperation, he tries to kill and cannibalize Pi, but Richard Parker kills him first. Along with his assistant, Atsuro Chiba, Okamoto interviews Pi for three hours and is highly skeptical of his first account.
Chiba agrees with Pi that the version of his ordeal with animals is the better than the one with people.
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He is rude and violent and hoards food on the lifeboat. He is young, beautiful, and exotic. He speaks only Chinese and is very sad and lonely in the lifeboat. He broke his leg jumping off the ship, and it becomes infected. The cook cuts off the leg, and the sailor dies slowly.
Life of Pi (Book) – Thug Notes Summary & Analysis
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