To surpass the role of a fool and be unique in the book Wonderful Fool, written by Shusaku Endo, one must be honest, generous and not retaliate with violence whenever they are attacked mentally and physically. Gaston, a travelling Frenchman obsessed with Japan, is the only character who surpasses the role of a fool. Gaston’s characteristics compromise more than a regular fool, evident in other characters in the book, and he surpasses the attitude of a fool. He is portrayed as an innocent, redemptive and even Christ-liked figure. Gaston thought never to be bothered by his surroundings, which is completely new to him and can cause him or his companions to be in a tough and stressful situation. Gaston is a person who doesn’t believe in violence. When Endo, who Gaston accompanied, tried to assault him physically, he did not respond to Endo in the way of violence.
Gaston’s open heart and willingness to help others made people find understanding and sympathy in him. Gaston, who is a foreigner and had no sense of the direction in the journey around Japan, was helped by his attitude of non-violence. He gained food and accommodation for his willingness to help and kindness towards other people. His current situation seems to go against him, as he is often embarrassed, laughed at, and got treated differently as a foreigner. For example, Gaston can be called a fool in situations like these when he entered a Japanese eatery with Tomoe and Takamori. He acts like an idiot that is not aware of the trouble he can potentially face and the consequences it brings. But, what makes Gaston surpasses the terms of a “fool” in these situations is that instead of revenge, he takes it as an experience and does not fight back against people that mock him.
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Gaston never discriminates against a person and treats them differently than others. He treats every person, ranging from the ones who are nice to him, such as Takamori, to ones that get annoyed with him, such as Tomoe and Endo, the character, equally. Gaston treats them with kindness and respect. He never gets mad at Tomoe and Endo, even though they both were bothered by Gaston’s foolishness. Gaston also has the characteristic of trusting any person he met along the way in Japan, such as trusting the Sensei in Shibuya for a night’s accommodation and fortune-telling. Even though Endo the character was harsh on him, he trusted others even when they have deceived or betrayed him. This shows how Gaston is a man that is open-minded and carefree. He does not regret his actions; he only cares about assisting people in need, which makes him more than an idiotic fool.
Gaston is a sincere person that will express his opinions and feelings. Although the trait is of honesty exists in every human, Gaston resembles it differently. He expresses his opinions whenever he can and does not think about the consequences of his expression. But, due to the limited knowledge of Japanese that Gaston has, it sometimes creates a sense of misinterpretation, such as when he expressed his love for Tomoe in a non-affectionate way, which was misunderstood by Tomoe. As a result, Tomoe thought of the love that Gaston expressed as affection for her. But, as stated by Gaston earlier in the book, when he met the gangsters In Shibuya, he considers everybody his friend and treats everybody equally. While Gaston was foolish enough to express his feelings verbally without considering how it would impact the receiver of the message, he always sacrifices himself for others and does it with honesty.
Gaston also won’t ask anything in return for his actions; even a simple Japanese dish called Oden was enough for him to save a prostitute from danger. His honesty and sacrifice support the idea that Gaston is portrayed as Christ-like. In conclusion, Gaston indeed acts like a fool in the book. He is blinded by society and facing changes as he travels around Japan and meets different people along the way. Gaston’s opinions are often ignored, but he overcomes people’s attitude towards him by being kind, honest, trust and honesty. Gaston’s treatment towards people is the factor the made him resembles Christ and surpassing the position of a fool.