"The Power Of One", written by Bryce Courtenay, is the story about an English boy called Peekay, the protagonist and his journey and experiences through his childhood to becoming an adult. During this period of time, he changes and develops due to several incidents that occur. He experiences tolerance, patience, human cruelty, racism and perseverance. He develops an ambition to become a lightweight boxing champion and goes through both emotional and physical development. He meets people that change the way he thinks, the way he acts, people that affect him deeply throughout the course of his childhood. .
During his years at the boarding school, he experiences human cruelty and racism from his fellow boarders. The boarders are all Boers, who are Dutch colonists or descendants of a Dutch colony in South Africa. Peekay is the youngest one out of all of them and is the only Englishmen. A person called "The Judge" leads the group of people that torments Peekay everyday. They conduct vehement behaviour towards him, such as Chinese burns, punching and kicking. They throw verbal abuse at him, for example "Pisskop" and "English bastard." They humiliate him by pissing on him. This all happens just because he is an Englishman, and is a clear example of human cruelty and racism.
Tolerance and patience is something Peekay also learnt and experienced during his time at the boarding school. No matter what the Judge and his gang do to him, he won't break and cry. Inkosi-Inkosikasi taught him not to cry on the outside, but in his inner self, in the "night country". He is showing signs of perseverance and determination. The quote "I had become an expert at camouflage. My precocity allowed me, chameleon like, to be to each what they required me to be," is also an example of tolerance and patience. He camouflages himself in various ways to survive in the world that he is living in. Although the quote is mentioned later in the novel, he is showing signs of being "an expert at camouflage" while he is still at boarding school.