Chocolate War By Cormier
" Do I dare disturb the universe"(172). With these words Robert

Cormier clearly shows his purpose for writing The Chocolate War. He writes it to
give insight into the consequences of standing up for what you believe in.

Through his portrayal of characters, and plot, Robert Cormier achieves his
purpose. Cormier shows what happens to Jerry Renault and his protagonist Archie

Costello. Through The Chocolate War Robert Cormier clearly shows his feelings
towards conformity and the abuse of power. The Chocolate War focuses on a
freshmen named Jerry Renault, and his problems at Trinity. Trinity is a
prestigious school run by Brother Leon, the school headmaster. Brother Leon runs
a school chocolate sale every year in the fall and it usually lasts about two
months. The vigils are a secret group at Trinity led by Archie Costello. When

Jerry refuses to participate in the school chocolate sale the Vigils take
offense. As a result the Vigils psychologically and physically destroy Jerry

Renault. Because of Jerry\'s refusal to conform he gets beaten by the school
bully. Robert Cormier shows the consequences of standing up for what you believe
in and his feelings towards conformity through his great use of character and
plot. One way in which Cormier achieves his purpose is through his excellent
portrayal of character. Through the characters of the novel Cormier sets up the
protagonist and the antagonist to make an interesting novel. Cormier\'s
description of his characters sets up a vivid image of the character and also
helps the reader to identify with the character. The main character in The

Chocolate War is Jerry Renault. Jerry is the unfortunate young adult who suffers
the consequences of standing up for what he believes in. Every morning Brother

Leon would read the roll call off and every morning Jerry would reply
"NO"(67). Cormier uses Jerry as the victim of the story, who gets
harassed over and over again. He is described as "Poor Renault"(86).

Cormier makes the reader feel sympathy for Jerry Renault and makes it so the
reader can identify with the suffering that Jerry is being confronted with. We
are made aware that Jerry\'s Constant refusal to conform gets him nothing but
trouble. Through Jerry, Cormier portrays his feelings towards standing up for
what you believe in and the consequences of what you might suffer to do that.

Perhaps the most insidious and evil character of them all is Archie Costello.

Archie is the assigner of the vigils and was considered very powerful. He plays
mind games with people instead of using physical means. People say " keep

Archie happy, when Archie\'s happy, we\'re all happy"(14). Cormier uses

Archie as the antagonist of the story. Archie gloats on his reputation and
abuses his power at Trinity. He sometimes stays up all night thinking up
assignments. "Archie has influence" which he could use over the school
and against Jerry Renault(26). Cormier uses Archie Costello as the cause of

Jerry Renault\'s suffering for standing up for what he believes in. Another
character in The Chocolate War who makes Jerry suffer is Brother Leon. Brother

Leon abuses his power as the headmaster of the school. Brother Leon is running
the school chocolate sale and will do anything to ensure it\'s success. Brother

Leon invested a large sum of money in the chocolates and feels this is the only
way for the school to make money. To ensure it\'s success Brother Leon asks the

Vigils to help " By getting behind the sale"(25). Brother Leon finally
convinces Archie Costello to get the Vigils to help. Archie says " The
vigils will help"(27). Robert Cormier does an excellent job of using
character to show his purpose for writing The Chocolate War. He uses very
realistic characters that are very easy to relate with especially easy for teen
readers. Cormier\'s books are very stirring, "...probably because his novels
are among the relatively few that combine a frank examination of the values and
decisions that trouble adolescents..."(256) Another way Cormier achieves
his purpose is through plot. Cormier makes the plot so the reader can identify
with what is happening. Cormier uses the plot to show the consequences of
standing up for what you believe in and to show his feelings towards conformity.

Cormier also uses vivid detail throughout the plot to let the reader know what
is happening. The plot of The Chocolate War is centered around a boy named Jerry

Renault. Jerry is attending his first year at Trinity Prep. High School. His
first year becomes a horrible year for him. One incident