The Marrow Thieves: Analysis Free Essay

Published: 2022-11-09
The Marrow Thieves: Analysis Free Essay
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Literature
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1740 words
15 min read

The Marrow Thieves is a fictional creation that presents a situation where people have been adversely affected by climate change (Book Backgrounder: The marrow thieves by Cherrie Dimaline). The critical situation has deprived people with an ability to dream due to health complications including madness. As a result, the only people with the ability to dream leaving the Indigenous North Americans as the only survivors able to dream. While the Indigenous people are able to dream, the state makes them endangered. The aboriginals are forced to donate their bone marrow while the unwilling donors are sentenced to death (Ketcheson). The author raises critical issues regarding human relations, social status, and social justice. It implies that the author was influenced by a certain psychological perception related to humanity. This paper will focus on the psychological criticism approach and a psychological form as revealed in The Marrow Thieves.

Trust banner

Is your time best spent reading someone else’s essay? Get a 100% original essay FROM A CERTIFIED WRITER!

Sociological Criticism

Social status

Most of the targeted marrow donors are poor and this makes them vulnerable to the recruiters. The low social status of Frenchie's family turns them to homeless wanderers. The family is scared and unable to determine their next home due to poverty and uncertainty. After Frenchie is left alone, neither does he have a place to call home or the resources to provide him security and comfort. Holding positions in the government seems to come with privileges. For example, the recruiters are turned into hunters and as a result, they are exempted from the harsh treatment. Many other aboriginals are homeless because of the threats unleashed by the government. Evidence can be obtained from the instance where Miigwans (Miig) introduces himself and reveals that they need to keep moving and running away from the recruiters. Miigwans says, "I'm Miigwans, and this is my family. But now. There'll be time for that tomorrow. You need to eat some more of that soup and then sleep. Tomorrow we move." (Dimaline 23)


In page 47, the author writes, "poisoning your own drinking water, changing the air so much that the earth shook and melted and crumbled, harvesting a race for medicine." This reveals the relationship between the recruiters and the indigenous community living in Canada. This community is only targeted because they are perceived as potential donors. Human nature of selfish desires is revealed through the egocentric approach to forcefully retrieve medicinal marrow from unwilling donors. Strong family relation is also evident in the novel when Mitch decides to sacrifice himself as the only way of protecting Frenchie. At the time when the capture was imminent, Mitch referred to the recruiters as devils by saying, Tabernacle! Come get me, devils!" (Dimaline 10). Mitch's tone reveals an eroded relationship between the indigenous community and the recruiters. Frenchie's brother is manhandled by the captors who were dressed in an official uniform that revealed their position in the Canadian Government.

The love among family members is also revealed in the relationship between Mitch and his father. Frenchie explains, "Dad stopped me to kiss the top of my head and I felt safe, even just for a minute" (Dimaline 12). This shows that immense father-son affection exists between Frenchie and his father. The children also prefer staying in a family setting and often get annoyed at the thought of being separated by malicious recruiters. The situation further makes Frenchie feel lonely after being left to survive alone in a highly unpredictable environment. Miigwans is another indigenous man who moves around with his family in an attempt to keep it united and safe from the recruiters by migrating to the North. The narration also reveals that Frenchie fell in love with Rose who joined the migrating group shortly after the former. The lady came from the White River and had been brought up by her grandparents before being captured by recruiters.

A strong relationship is evident among the indigenous members who have been united by the same problem. In the novel, Frenchie reached a point of death but was rescued by Zheegwon, Miigwans and a group of fellow aboriginals. The rescuers gave Frenchie first aid treatment, water, and soup which enabled later to regain lost energy. Frenchie had starved and lost a lot of energy while trying to find his way to safety. Frenchie narrates, "The man spoon-fed me broth with sweet corn mush until the fist unclenched just enough for me to rest..." (Dimaline 23). The indigenous people are able to sit around a fire and chat with one another. Mining takes such opportunities to educate the people about their unique traits that make them endangered. He explains that "Dreams get caught in the webs woven in your bones... You are born with them. Your DNA weaves them into the marrow like spinners" (Dimaline 24). As one of the eldest in the group, Mining takes up the role of leading and educate the rest of the team. It is clear that all the members respect the advice given by Mining.

Impact of society on the characters

In the novel, society turns out to have a serious impact on the characters. After Frenchie and his family is broken by the Marrow Thieves, the former is forced to become a hunter. He is quick to remember that some people in his generation were great hunters. Frenchie narrates, "Mom had said her uncles and grandpa were great hunters, that is was family trait" (Dimaline 16). The situation within the society forces the protagonist to develop a unique feeling about inherited traits that in turn shape his character in the novel. The situation forces Frenchie to develop a strong will to fight through tough situations. At one point, the protagonist recalls her mother's advice, "You have to try to keep the goal in your head. You can't let what's not here, what's missing, you can't let that slow you down" (Dimaline 18). Despite the fact that he is alone, the Frenchie does not allow fear and discouragement to creep into his mind. He has found a way of harnessing courage from a tough situation.

Both Frenchie and Mitch are bitter and disapprove the manner in which the aboriginals are treated. For example, Mitch is bitter at the captors and refers to them as devils and morons. He says, "Come get me, morons!" It is clear that this type of inhuman treatment creates bitterness among the aboriginals (Dimaline 10). From one perspective, Mitch's action can be considered desperate. He had no other option but to surrender to the recruiters and save his younger brother. On the other hand, the sacrifice made by Mitch can be termed as courageous because he is willing to face the harsh treatment and save his brother.

Tragedy has brought together people whose main interest is to run away from the captors. The society has made Miig develop a high sense of responsibility which he used to lead the team to the North. It is evident that indigenous people preserved respect for older people. Not only does he lead the team but also teaches the Frenchie and other teenagers the ways of life of their people. The society has

Psychological Criticism

The author of the novel seems to have a greater concern in the way human beings interact. It is evident that one of the most significant themes in the story is greediness and self-centeredness. The author seems to suggest that human beings will always bow down to their selfish desires at the expense of humanity. In the novel, the recruiters use merciless approaches on the indigenous people in an attempt to collect the precious marrow for the powerful individuals. The manner in which the entire process of marrow collection is conducted breaks and threatens the unity of many families. Frenchie is separated from both his parents and later separated from his brother Mitch. Miig shows a lot of concern for the entire team that he leads. Their psychological motivation of Frenchie stems from the harsh experience he has faced. He was still young yet he lost a brother and both parents to the thieves. Frenchie develops courage from the thought that he comes from a lineage of legendary hunters. The young man believes that he possesses the intelligence required to survive in a jungle. He gets annoyed after Lincoln and Travis strangled RiRi; Travis was shot by Frenchie. Frenchie says, "Something had changed since I'd fired the gun, since I'd killed Travis" (Dimaline 147). Mitch is motivated by love for his younger brother and makes a decision to surrender to the captors. Mitch believed that both their parents had been victims of the recruiters and it was his responsibility to take care of Frenchie. Miigwans and Minerva are motivated by the fact that they are the eldest members of the group. The aspect of age psychologically orients these two to take up leadership roles. In addition, Miigwans and Minerva are well informed about the ways of their people as well as history. This makes them more knowledgeable than the younger members of the team. As a result, they share this knowledge and experiences with the seven young aboriginals. Minerva intelligence is revealed when she uses her beautiful voice to breakdown the marrow extraction machine. Rose is psychologically motivated by the fact that she was left alone after her grandmother was captured. She was also taught some hunting skills by her grandmother's brother and also received a lot of support and lessons from Minerva in their native language.


The Marrow Thieves is a futuristic novel where the author narrates how a community has been targeted because of their rare intelligence contained in the marrow. Members of the native community are captured and forced to "donate" their marrows. It is clear that the indigenous people are not well-endowed anything wealth other than intelligence and indigenous knowledge. There is evidence of love among family members and separation seems to have adverse effects on the members. In this case, an example of Frenchie and Miigwans can be revisited. In the novel, characters are psychologically motivated by their experiences and social positions that are determined by gender and age.

Works Cited

"Book Backgrounder: The marrow thieves by Cherrie Dimaline." n.d. Canada Reads- Accessed 9 Jan 2018.

Dimaline, Cherie. The marrow thieves. Toronto: Cormorant Books Incorporated, 2017.

Ketcheson, Ann. "The marrow thieves- Review." 8 Sep 2017. The University of Manitoba. Accessed 9 Jan 2018.

Cite this page

The Marrow Thieves: Analysis Free Essay. (2022, Nov 09). Retrieved from

Request Removal

If you are the original author of this essay and no longer wish to have it published on the SpeedyPaper website, please click below to request its removal:

Liked this essay sample but need an original one?

Hire a professional with VAST experience!

24/7 online support

NO plagiarism