Pinkie Brown

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Pinkie Brown is a fictional character, the main character and antihero of Graham Greene's 1938 novel Brighton Rock.

Character overview

In the novel, Brown is portrayed as an up-and-coming gangster, the teenaged leader and enforcer of a powerful gang in the Brighton underworld. A violent sociopath, he brutalizes and murders people, even his own henchmen, without compunction or remorse. In the beginning of the novel, he kills Fred Hale, a chronic gambler who assisted the rival gang in dispatching Brown's predecessor; that crime sets the rest of the story in motion.

Brown is depicted as severely neurotic. He abhors sex; as a child, he spied on his parents making love, and was both aroused and disgusted by it. He is obsessed with the idea of sin, and loathes women as the embodiment of weakness. His idea of sin is shaped by his Roman Catholic upbringing, although he often mocks the Church. He is not without normal desires, however; he wonders what it would feel like to love someone, even as he thinks himself incapable of it, and his phobia of sex does not prevent him from being as preoccupied as any other teenaged boy with losing his virginity.

Although clearly named by the other characters, within the narrative Pinkie is never referred to as such; he is only ever called "the Boy".

Conflicts with other characters

Brown is faced with two main conflicts throughout the course of the novel, in the form of the two other main characters: Ida Arnold, a local busybody who...
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