Loss of Innocence in Burn My Heart by Beverly Naidoo

Topics: Black people, White people, Friendship Pages: 3 (1148 words) Published: April 18, 2011
Loss of Innocence in Burn my Heart

Burn My Heart a novel by Beverly Naidoo portrays two boys of different races in a racist country. Mathew is friends with both Mugo and Lance. The biggest difference between Lance and Mugo is that Mugo is poor and has no friends while Lance is rich and very popular. Mathew needs Lance to be his friend so he gains some popularity whilst Mugo has always been his loyal friend. Mugo is always there for Mathew and he always listen to what Mathew wants sometimes giving his own perspective. Mathew loses his innocence after he heard about Kamau being sent to a detention camp, Lance pointing a gun at Mugo, and lastly him treating Mugo like they were not friends, he begins to feel bad because of his part in how Lance and the other white people treat the locals.

Loss of Innocence is when a person feels guilty for an event where he thinks that he did not make a mistake and he thinks that everything is perfect but he later realizes that he had made a mistake and therefore starts to feel bad about it later. What it means is that he/she begins to feel bad and regretful about a past event. It is mainly regret which is felt by the person after they lose their innocence. Mathew experiences a loss of innocence when he is exposed to the harsh realities of the Kenya. He sees how the car that his family and him were using got sabotaged and they spent a night in the gorge. His family also hears how many white families are brutally killed in other parts of Kenya. His life is not as perfect as he perceived it to be, and he has realized that it is actually very problematic. This happens to Mathew towards the climax and falling action when Lance treats Mugo like a piece of garbage. He points a gun at him, and says offensive words to him (130).

Mathew and his family always respected Mugo, Kamau, Mercy, Josiah, and their other laborers, but other white families did not share the same opinion as them. The Smithers family (Mr. and Mrs. Smithers, and...
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