Clark’s Character Development

     Clark went from being a cold, secretive executive to a loving father, and it only took the death of his wife and company to realise it. For someone who had lost so much, it all seems to be for the better. From the start, he came across as a stuck up executive who seemed to be hiding things. Even throughout Jende’s interview in the beginning, he was first shown shredding important documents, and half interested in the interview itself. He would look at Jende with “vacant green eyes” and lack of eye contact (Mbue 7). His priority was obviously not there with Jende, but with whatever he had going on in the company. He was so disinterested in contrast to Jende. His hiring of Jende had no effect on Clark, while it meant everything to Jende, who was filled with “desperation” for this job (10). 

     One of the biggest problems with Clark was his inability to balance his work and home life. Cindy complains about it many times on phone calls, and asks him, “why don’t you just work nonstop till next year?” when talking about Clark’s work schedule (34). She definitely felt like both Clark and Vince did not care enough about family life, and states that Vince, like Clark had “no sense of family” (34). On one hand, he is supporting his family with his job. All of the riches, mansions, chauffeur and life of luxury was fueled by his work with the Lehman Brothers. On the other hand, he was severely neglecting his home life. He barely saw his family, and as a result they, especially his wife, felt abandoned and begun to have issues. Whether he knew it or not, his family was falling apart, yet he did nothing about it. He was cheating on his wife constantly as well, which does no good for his familial relationships as well.

     When Cindy died, it was like something awakened within himself. Whatever problems Vince and Clark had, it was somewhat irrelevant now. Clark was disappointed in his son because his son chose to not follow Clark down the path to wealth, instead choosing to live a life of enlightenment in India, without the money and corruption. If Clark was mad at Vince, he may have been partially angry of himself as well. It was revealed later in the book that he loved to write poems and watch the sunset, which is very unlike him, and an unexpected hobby he had. It suggests that he once was like Clark, but instead of choosing the path to Truth, he chose the safe and stable option. After Cindy’s death, and a major wound in his wallet, Clark could finally stop caring so much of his work and secrets, and focus more on Mighty and Vince. He started going to Mighty’s hockey practices, spending time with him, and even calling Vince three times a week and emailing every other day. He was finally caring about his family, and started pursuing things he truly loved, such as writing poems for Mighty. Even though it was sad, as Vince said, “it was really strange how his dad had suddenly become a man who made his life revolve around family” (340).

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