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News of the World


A brilliant work of historical fiction that explores the boundaries of family,...
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Discuss News of the World by Paulette Jiles:
What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

Created: 07/25/17

Replies: 15

Posted Jul. 25, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 1584

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What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

Partway through his journey with Johanna, Kidd feels as though he was "drawn back into the stream of being because there was once again life in his hands." What do you think this means? What does it tell you about Kidd's emotional life?


Posted Jul. 30, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
renem

Join Date: 12/01/16

Posts: 172

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RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

Kidd was somewhat depressed and resigned to the fact that he believed he was an old man with a short time left on earth. He was simply surviving until then.


Posted Jul. 30, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Marcia S

Join Date: 02/08/16

Posts: 169

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RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

We know that he had loved his wife deeply, and he loved his daughters. He was loyal to those he'd been in the service with. He was an honorable person. I think he had deep empathy as he came to care deeply about Johanna and rescued her from her abusive aunt and uncle. I believe he came to view her as another daughter or granddaughter.


Posted Jul. 30, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Gloria

Join Date: 03/11/15

Posts: 56

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RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

I think Kidd, from his education and experiences with war, was a deeply empathic man. He had lost his wife and his daughters were far away. He didn't have anyone who needed him until Joanna came along. And I think he was afraid all along that taking her back to live with her relatives would end badly.
And we do see some romantic interest with Mrs. Gannett.


Posted Jul. 30, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Maggie

Join Date: 01/01/16

Posts: 112

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RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

He was a lonely man. His wife had died and his daughters are dealing with their own problems. He was a daughters father, so he knew girls and felt quite comfortable with Johanna after she started behaving herself, as in not wanting to run away. I think this was the best outcome for him, someone to care for and someone to care for him.


Posted Jul. 31, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
RuthEh

Join Date: 07/31/17

Posts: 15

RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

Kidd needed one final mission in his life, be it getting from North to South safely, taking on a wild child, or knowing that he still had what it took in his physical being. It felt like it was to be his last hurrah.


Posted Jul. 31, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Cynthia

Join Date: 06/07/17

Posts: 36

RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

Throughout the story, Kidd makes references to his age in terms of years, his aching body, diminishing endurance, and all he's been through in his life, including the hardships of war, personal and financial loss. He was depressed with a waning spirituality. He was "cranky." He worried about getting Johanna home safely and resentful at having to take on the responsibility, having raised his own girls. "I already did that." But at the same time, after listening to his "inner voice," his spirits lightened as he set about to "do it again." Johanna was an emotional boost to him...for the remainder of his life.


Posted Aug. 01, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
labbelee

Join Date: 04/29/11

Posts: 11

RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

He felt he had done it all, had a career, served his country, raised a family, what more was there?


Posted Aug. 05, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
dianaps

Join Date: 05/29/15

Posts: 256

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RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

He seemed to be a solitary man who was a bit depressed about his aging. He missed his wife and their life together and longed to see his daughters and grandchildren.


Posted Aug. 06, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Tired Bookreader

Join Date: 08/19/11

Posts: 87

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RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

Like anyone in their later years, there is a considerable amount of loneliness as your friends and family pass on to the next life. He has seen a lot, fought many battles, had courage when needed, but was still lost when he wife died. Children have their own lives. Any small kindness is cherished, and sometimes misinterpreted. Captain Kidd could be alone, but he seemed to prefer the company of anyone else to keep his mind occupied and less likely to reminisce.


Posted Aug. 07, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
viquig

Join Date: 06/25/14

Posts: 24

RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

Certainly Kidd was a lonely, slightly depressed man when we meet him as other readers have so well described. In addition he was a very cautious man who had learned not to trust others quickly but reserved his judgement until he assessed their intent. This cautious characteristic was invaluable in the wilds of 1870's Texas. It saved him and Johanna several times during their travels.


Posted Aug. 07, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Suzanne

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 247

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RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

He was a kind and thoughtful person and he knew for Johanna's welfare, as well as his own, he couldn't leave her. His conscience was always his inner voice.


Posted Aug. 12, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
deeh

Join Date: 03/03/12

Posts: 186

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RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

He was capable of deep affection. He loved his wife and daughters, his comrades in arms, and he came to love Johanna deeply, too. He was an old man who had experienced a lot of hardships and joys and kept them in his heart.


Posted Aug. 12, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
juliaa

Join Date: 12/03/11

Posts: 185

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RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

It seems to me that the author has given the Captain a rich emotional life. We know that he loved his wife and missed her sorely, that he loves his daughters, and longs for their return to Texas, that he was a loyal soldier, that he is a man of honor who keeps his word, and that he comes to love Johanna like another daughter. We know that he is resilient, that he remains interested in the world even to the end of his days--as an old man he is still working on the Kiowa dictionary and helping his son-in-law in the print shop.


Posted Aug. 13, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
ScribblingScribe

Join Date: 02/29/16

Posts: 73

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RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

Captain Kidd was a deeply thoughtful man who had lost nearly everything, either to death, the war or distance. He was lonely and simply marking time as he journeyed from town to town. It was not until he met Johanna that he found purpose and his heart again. His interactions with Johanna and others showed his compassion and empathy. He thought about what she was struggling with and what was best for her, rarely thinking of himself in the process. He was a kind, sweet man with a big heart.


Posted Aug. 16, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
rebeccar

Join Date: 03/13/12

Posts: 350

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RE: What do we know about Kidd's emotional life?

Like many widows/widowers, Kidd seems to have never quite gotten over the shock of losing a life partner. I have seen this change in my own family, with friends of my parents, and - as the years go by- with my own friends. In addition, Kidd seems to be dealing with what is now labeled as PTSD. The Vietnam War (called "The American War" in Vietnam) was the first time that many Americans saw evidence that young people can not be killing machines for a year or two or three, then come home and pick up where they left off. Jiles's book helps readers to see that even so-called manly-men have emotions; while they might be well-hid from view, they haunt the dreams and pensive moments of these individuals.


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