Characterization of Whata

Outer characterization

Whata is the main character of the short story “Joy Ride” by Toni Pivac. He is a young boy, but his exact age is not mentioned. However, a flashback reveals that the boy is probably eight or nine years old: “One time, Hemi and Whata had had a running race to Aunty's house - it was that close. Hemi had won, but only just, and only because he was all grown up and Whata was still only eight” (ll. 53-55). He has a Maori name so he is probably of Maori descent.

Whata has an older brother, Hemi, and lives together with him and their mother. His father used to be a soldier in Afghanistan, but the story’s ending suggests that he most likely died. Physically, Whata is described as having “daddy-long-legs legs, too skinny to be any ...

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