Z for Zachariah written by Robert O’Brien displays internal and external conflicts throughout the novel. The internal conflict built up character development as it showed the characters personality and thoughts, we discovered early in the story that Ann is a very powerful and intelligent teenager. The external conflict made a big dramatic impact on the book, as it showed the clash between the two main characters with Mr Loomis being the stereotypical male trying to overpower Ann physically.

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Both internal and external conflicts were both very important in different ways and are both vital for this story. Z for Zachariah was a very dramatic book due to the amount of external conflict between Mr Loomis and Ann. Ann had to face Mr Loomis while he was in various different states of mind, many when he was extremely angry. Mr Loomis wanted to over power Ann, and with him being a male and Ann being a female he assumed that he would be physically stronger.

There were several physical acts in which Mr Loomis tried to overpower Ann, it started off on June the 24th when she asked him if he was married and he ‘grabbed’ her hand, then 4 days later on June the 28th Mr Loomis attempted to sexually assault Ann while she was sleeping, fortunately for Ann he was unsuccessful as Ann had awakened when she felt his presence in the room. Ann had to run from the house and live in the cave, trying out a system to share the valley with Mr Loomis with making minimal contact.

About 10 days after the attempted sexual assault Ann walks up to the house about to start her daily routine, and stands in front of the house as she needed to ask Mr Loomis a question about keys for a padlock. It was then when was shot in the ankle by Mr Loomis from the upstairs window. These external conflicts between Mr Loomis and Ann made a big dramatic impact on the story. The external conflicts made the novel very suspenseful and exciting. Theinternal conflict in Z for Zachariah was a key factor for character development throughout the novel.

Page 2 Internal and external relationship in z for zachariah Essay

The internal conflict in this story built up the main characters personality and traits, with Ann being very strong, enthusiastic and intelligent and Mr Loomis being selfish, ungrateful, and controlling. The story beingwritten in diary form let the reader easily know how Ann was feeling about Mr Loomis’ actions. At the beginning of the book she was very cautious about approaching him and afraid knowing that someone was in the valley as she didn’t know if he was trustworthy, this was shown when she wrote in her diary ‘ I will go in the cave now and sleep. I am still afraid.

And yet it is – what is the word I mean? – companionable to know there is someone else in the valley. ’ (page 30) After time passed on Ann cared for Mr Loomis while he was sick, and was generally worried for his health. There were times during this book where Ann feared that Mr Loomis might not survive the night, and then there were also times when she was very happy, and felt optimistic about her future and even having thoughts about getting married with Mr Loomis, ‘Still, I thought, when Mr Loomis recovered from his sickness, there was no reason why we could not plan to be married in a year’ (page 89).

As Mr Loomis eventually recovered and tried to sexually assault Ann she became very fearful and scared of him, she works out a way to share the valley while not living together, as this goes on she remains worried, and very afraid that Mr Loomis may turn on Ann and try to hurt her. Around the 10th day of sharing the valley Ann is shot in her ankle by Mr Loomis. She has to run for her life, worried that any second that her life could be over, she goes into hiding from Mr Loomis.

Many weeks later on August the 6th she wakes up in a hollow tree that she has to sleep in as Mr Loomis found her cave, wakes up hopeful, having a plan to leave the valley as she cannot live in fear from Mr Looms. Which she does so, and when she left, she was hopeful, that she would find other life out there. The internal conflict through out this book gave a very good insight on Ann’s feelings and how her personality developed over Mr Loomis’ actions. The external and internal conflicts in Z for Zachariah were key factors for this novel and were both very important for different purposes.

Both conflicts were just as important as each other, with the internal giving an insight on Ann’s thoughts and also character development, the external conflict made a big dramatic impact making the book very suspenseful and interesting. Both conflicts relied on each other as when there was external conflict between Ann and Mr Loomis there were the thoughts on the actions from Ann’s point of view. The conflicts in Z for Zachariah are both just as important, and are both needed for this story. Z for Zachariah is a suspenseful, exciting and interesting book containing external and internal conflicts.

The two main characters had many differences with their personalities, which clashed throughout the book, causing external conflict which made the book very dramatic. The main theme throughout this story is power, in which Mr Loomis wanted to physically overpower Ann. The dramatic impact and character development from the external and internal conflicts were both very important and had their own different purposes. Z for Zachariah was very interesting, and exciting and has many lessons to be learned throughout the story.

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