MONTANA 1948 By Larry Watson. Character Study: Gail Hayden Ashleigh, Nerissa, Oriana, Katherine. Character. Slim & Slender Brown hair Old fashioned Mother to David Wife to Wes Daughter-in-law to Julian & Enid In her mid 30’s Lives in Bentrock but doesn’t like it.
Ashleigh, Nerissa, Oriana, Katherine
Knows what's right and makes her life one of pursuing this.
Good at making preservatives eg. Jams , apple sauce etc.
Not racist and fair to everyone.
One of the main themes of this novel is recognizing the difference between family loyalty and justice. Another theme that's not so emphasized, but definitely present, is the treatment of whites towards native americans, and another theme is abusing power. In my opinion, this act is an amalgamation of these three themes. When Gail alters her opinion on her husband's course of action, to arrest his brother Frank, she was exercising her personal belief that family loyalty is more important than justice. There could be some historical motivation for this. Because the year is 1948, sentiments of inequality amongst Native Americans and Whites were much more stronger than they are now. This could be one reason why Dr. Frank molested his female, Native American patients. Gail, on the other hand, does have a friendship with her Sioux servant, Marie. However, she still is Native American, and there possibly is some sort of racism instilled in her deep down. On top of Gail's slight racism, she knows that her family has more power than Marie. While she wants Frank to stop his horrible actions, she does not want to tarnish the family name, and she wants the family to maintain their power while silently implementing a solution. In other words, power and racism are two reasons that Gail believes in family loyalty over justice.