Crispin: The Cross of Lead deals with some heavy happenings, so we're glad we have Bear along for the ride to lighten the mood. In his role as Crispin's mentor, Bear not only teaches Crispin about important things like freedom and politics and playing the recorder, he also teaches Crispin, who's been through some tough times—like thirteen years' worth of 'em—to laugh despite the fact that the world isn't perfect, and even to laugh because the world isn't perfect. Laughter and happiness are necessary, especially when living in a world of grisly executions and frequent plagues.
Questions About Happiness
Bear laughs a lot. What exactly does he find funny? What patterns do you notice and what does this tell you about his values?
Do Bear (and other characters) laugh and express joy when things aren't really funny? Why might they laugh then?
Which characters are truly happy? Which are not? Back your claims up with proof from the text.
According to the book, what makes people happy?
Chew on This
Poor people are shown to be happier than rich people.
Rich people are shown to be happier than poor people.