In this essay I intend to show how the relationship between the two Main characters in Malorie Blackman’s first book, “Noughts and Crosses”, matures and reflect on the difficulties they face in a Society where people from different races are treated differently. The first indication that the friends, Sephy and Callum, have feelings for each other comes straight away when Callum says, “ Can I kiss you? ” Sephy does not really like this idea at first and thinks “Yuck” and wrinkles up her nose. However, she eventually agrees though says, “Make it fast!
” They kiss very awkwardly and Callum says, “If you can’t kiss your friends then who can you kiss! ” This shows that they still feel too young to have a relationship but at this stage there is no real worries for either of them, although, Callum seems distant at times. These quotations tell the first stage of a long and difficult relationship to come.
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The first indication that Callum is not entirely happy with his life is when he shares his thoughts with Sephy that he would like to escape but bitterly says that the whole world is like the place he is in now.
Sephy does not realise what he means but Callum says, “You’re on the inside, Sephy. I’m not. ” This quote shows how Callum feels some Resentment towards the crosses (dark-skinned people). At this point the main reason is the fact that he; a nought (white skin) who previously went to a nought-only school that have a lack of resources and funding, has managed to pass the entrance exam to a previously cross-only school but has to join what he calls “the baby class. ” This is because everyone in the class is at least a year younger than him and he feels frustrated over the amount of discrimination that he receives for being white skinned.
This leads to Callum telling Sephy that he feels they are in different places and Callum says “us noughts are in one place and you crosses are in another with a huge, great wall between us. ” The emphasis on the ‘us’ and the ‘you’ illustrates how significant having different skin colour makes in the book. It shows that the two friends will face problems just for being such good friends with members of the opposite skin colour. The idea of Crosses and Noughts mixing seems a bad idea to most of the World that Callum and Sephy live in. Various characters in the book try to stop Sephy and Callum being friends.
The pair’s parents both have a very negative attitude to members of the opposite race. For example Callum’s Mum’s view on Callum going to a school run by ‘crosses’ is that Noughts should not mix with crosses and that mixing “doesn’t work” Most of the teachers at the School don’t believe that they should Mix and Sephy gets into trouble for sitting with Noughts at Lunch break. These people don’t understand why Callum and Sephy are friends and like society today sometimes let prejudices cloud their judgement. For Sephy and Callum’s relationship to work they have to try and ignore what other people say and think.
Times often prove very difficult for the pair though and Sephy gets Beaten up after sitting with Callum and the other whites in the food hall. Her schoolmates tell her, “stick to your own kind”, and that ‘’none of them are keen to make friends with soap and water”. This tells us how the white people are perceived. It shows us the kinds of thing people thought and still think Sephy and Callum are eventually driven apart although they still really love each other. The rest of the world does their best to split them up and to hurt them as much as they can.