We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy

The Initial Meeting Between Rivers and Sassoon Essay Sample

  • Pages: 3
  • Word count: 778
  • Rewriting Possibility: 99% (excellent)
  • Category: novel

Get Full Essay

Get access to this section to get all help you need with your essay and educational issues.

Get Access

Introduction of TOPIC

The relationship between Rivers and Sassoon is one that greatly develops through this novel and this development begins in this extract. At first Sassoon is just another client to Rivers. He has been told to convince Sassoon to retract his statement and return to the war and this is what Rivers intends to do. He treats Sassoon as he does any other patient, the first thing he does is analyse. On meeting Sassoon, the first thing he notes is his,

“Pale skin, [and the] purple shadows under [his] eyes” and how, “Apart from that, [there is] no other sign of nervous disorder”

Evidence that Rivers is only interested in Sassoon as a client. During their meeting, Rivers jokes,

“One of the nice things about serving afternoon tea is that it made so many neurological tests redundant.”

Which reveals his character as a very judgmental man but it seems that he is only this way because of his profession, something he takes very seriously as shown by his reference to it,

“But one of the paradoxes of being an army psychiatrist is that you don’t actually get very far by ordering your patients to be frank.”

It is obvious that Rivers is very experienced and the fact that Rivers tries to ‘read’ every move Sassoon makes and analyse it for signs of neurasthenia shows that analysing people is very much a part of his nature. He spends a lot of their meeting asking him questions and trying to understand Sassoon’s motives which is partly to do with his profession and partly to do with his nature.


p style="text-align: justify;">Sassoon, however, seems a very confident character. He has no problem

Sorry, but full essay samples are available only for registered users

Choose a Membership Plan
answering Rivers’ questions and stating his view, which is the reason he is at Craig Lockhart in the first place. Unlike most of River’s other patients Sassoon answers Rivers honestly, is compliant and acknowledges that Rivers is in control. Despite having unorthodox views, Sassoon is not afraid to tell Rivers what he thinks which highlights his comfort with him. This fact is highlighted because at first Sassoon stutters and is uncomfortable but Rivers is able to make him talk to him by relating relate to Sassoon and openly talking to him about why he is in Craig Lockhart and his plans for him sometimes as an equal rather than as a patient. Sassoon seems a very likeable character and unlike the other meetings we encounter with Rivers, this one isn’t riddled with silences.

In fact, despite the fact that through the extract Rivers continues to analyse Sassoon, they soon become comfortable with each other. Rivers seem to understand Sassoon and becomes convinced that he does not suffer the War Neurosis. He seems to take their relationship further than that of a patient to their doctor. An example is when Sassoon asks if crossing his dreams with reality is abnormal and Rivers answers,

“I hope not, it happens to me all the time”

When compared to Rivers’ relationship with his other patients their relationship seems a very familiar and friendly one.

Although they joke with each other and seem familiar, but they are both still aware of their positions and duties. Rivers tells Sassoon,

“You realise it’s my duty to try and change [your anti war neurosis]? I can’t pretend to be neutral” to which Sassoon replies,

“No, of course not” after a glance that,

“takes in both their uniforms.”

Which shows that even though they become comfortable, their relationship still remains professional and stoic as Pat Barker highlights that stereotypically the relationship between men is generally a stagnant one. A stereotype that has to be established in the early relationship of Rivers and Sassoon in order for a contrast to be made between their later relationship. Rivers acknowledges that Sassoon is a very complex man and despite having personal chemistry with him, he is still always aware that he has a task to complete which involves changing Sassoon’s views and beliefs.

In conclusion, this first meeting is a foundation for the relationship between Rivers and Sassoon which later develops into one of trust and friendship despite the fact that Rivers is a therapist and Sassoon, his subject.

We can write a custom essay on

The Initial Meeting Between Rivers and Sassoon Ess ...
According to Your Specific Requirements.

Order an essay

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

Pale Horse Pale Rider

Reading the three different novels "Old Mortality", "Noon Wine" and "Pale Horse, Pale Rider" you will learn that despite the different plots in the novels there is a common thread. The protagonists in all three novels has been challenged or locked in some way by the society but finally breaks free and live a better life the way they want to. The strong individual beats the society and its challenges. Plot The first novel "Old Mortality" is divided in three parts. In the first part we hear about two girls Maria and Miranda learning about their dead aunt Amy through letters, poems and stories told by their grandmother. Amy was raised to be a proper woman in a society where women had few rights. In the second part Maria and Miranda are staying at a convent, where they are raised to become real ladies. Their knowledge and information is filtered, so they...

A Joke That Is Not So Funny

"Man has been endowed with reason, with the power to create, so that he can add to what he's been given. But up to now he hasn't been a creator, only a destroyer. Forests keep disappearing, rivers dry up, wild life's become extinct, the climate's ruined and the land grows poorer and uglier every day" (Russell). From this quote from Anton Chekhov, one can tell he viewed life in a very different way. Chekhov enjoyed writing stories about reality. He often wrote about tragic, true stories that happened in his own life. Chekhov liked to write stories that were very sad and depressing but he just wanted to write about how he viewed life. The story, "A Joke," can be a true story in many lives, possibly even Anton Chekhov's life (kirjasto). The story "A Joke" is about a girl named Nadyzhda Petrovna and a guy whose name is not mentioned. The story begins when the two go sledding down...

Novels Alexandre Dumas

Alexandre Dumas also known as Alexandre Dumas, Pere is a french author best known for his talents, prolific plays, and historical adventure novels. He was born on july 24, 1802 in villers-cotterers, France. Duams, got his last name from his grandmother, who was a former haitian slave. He was french’s most popular authors in the 19th century. His novels the three musketeers and the court of monte cristo was indisputable. They were both written in the year 1844, and translated into English two years later. The author sets the novel at the time france was going through a lot of political plots. According to the penquin Readers sheet: “Louis XIII had been on the throne for many years, but during his minority, from 1610 to 1617, his mother Marie de Médicis had served as regent and became extremely powerful. She allied France with Hapsburg Spain and arranged the marriage in 1615 of...

Popular Essays


Emma Taylor


Hi there!
Would you like to get such a paper?
How about getting a customized one?