Interestingly enough, I came across a fellow classmate’s binary post about Abbott’s “Rollo at Play” that addresses the Right vs Wrong binary that used the exact passage I had in mind to use for a mess post. They refer to Jonas’ admonishment of Rollo and James on pages 22 through 24 as clear indications of right and wrong; however, I believe that this is a distinct attempt on Abbott’s part to show a gray area in right and wrong. Specifically, James starts out giving Rollo the option to “let [him] settle it, or [he] will lead [Rollo] home to [his] mother, and tell her about it, and let her settle it” (Abbott 22). Rather than deferring to Rollo’s parents right away as adults are taught to do in times of trouble, he gives Rollo, the young child, the ability to choose what will happen as a result of his actions. There is no direct course of action brought by Rollo’s misconduct; Rollo now gets to choose not what’s right and what’s wrong, but instead what is “better”.
Abbott, Jacob. “Forgotten Chapters of Boston’s Literary History.” Rollo at Play, Or, Safe Amusements, Boston. Thomas H. Webb & Co., 1838. Web. 6 Oct. 2015. <http://www.bostonliteraryhistory.com/chapter-4/jacob-abbott-rollo-play-or-safe-amusements-boston-thomas-h-webb-co-1838>.