Social Injustice

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​Can a former child soldier retain or regain a sense of identity through his or her experiences? The experiences we have in life help to shape us into the people we become in the future and bring us close to understanding who we are as a person. However there are times when experiences can change us and make us seem like complete strangers to ourselves. These types of experiences can be from changes to our surroundings, lifestyle or other variables that are different to our normal life. This can lead us to lose touch with our own sense of security, well being and ultimately our own identities. Ismael Beah in Long Way Gone struggles with significant changes as his identity switches from a normal young boy to a brutal child soldier, and he loses touch with the person he once was. Such a story illustrates the fragility of the human spirit to suggest that we too can easily become strangers to ourselves if we are subjected to intense emotional and psychological experiences. ​Ishmael's family has the strongest connection to his emotions and his actions, and is the primary reason for the tough journey he endures as he tries to search all of Sierra Leon in hopes of finding them. Ishmael reflects often, back to his memories of each member of his family and how it relates to how he is feeling, when he is alone. His father once told him “If you are alive, there is hope for a better day and something good to happen. If there is nothing good left in the destiny of a person, he of she will die (Beah 54).” These are important words of wisdom passed on to Ishmael which helps to keep his spirits high, when they could be at its lowest after losing his family, but his father is just one of the people who helps to play the role of making Ishmael emotionally prepared for what he will encounter later in his life. ​Ishmael's life was seemingly normal growing up. He lived in a small village, had friends , and a close family, considering his parents were separated. Ishmael's friends and...
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