The novel Boy Overboard, written by Morris Gleitzman, is the story of a young Afghan boy named Jamal fleeing his country along with his family. Jamal and his family and friends all have a longing for freedom, equality and independence, which drives them to find a new life in Australia. This is demonstrated when they find a safe and equal environment for Bibi and her mother, when Jamal’s parents raise money for their journey, when they risk their protection with smugglers, and when Jamal and his friends survive on the boat. Jamal’s parents wanted to settle in a place where safety and equality would be presented to the family, especially Bibi and her mother. In Afghanistan, life was not very equal when comparing boys and girls. Girls could not go outside without the company of a man, which meant that Bibi could not play soccer, but that did not stop her, no matter how risky it was. As a result, the family wanted to go to a place where it was safe and equal for women. The author shows the importance of equality for women when he writes: ‘…female soccer players. Bibi seems a bit overwhelmed.’ This shows that their ache for freedom, equality and independence inspired them to find a safe and equal environment for Bibi and her mother. Jamal’s parents both sacrificed something in order to raise money for survival. His father sold the taxi that he had even bore he had Jamal and Bibi, and his mother sold the candlestick that had been in their family for generations. Both items were very dear to them, and parting with these objects was not easy for either of them. This is shown when the novel quotes: ‘Sell the taxi? That must be really sad for him. He’s had that taxi for years. Longer than he’s had me and Bibi.’ And the author shows the mothers pain by writing: ‘I know she had to do it. It was the only way she could get us to safety. And now I know why she’s so miserable.’ This is proof of how, in order to get freedom, equality and independence, the parents...
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