Innocence to experience in Forbidden City
Life is a journey that everyone has to go through. We always start with innocent and inexperience. As we go through our journey of life, we usually meet some obstacle and challenge that we have to overcome to continue our journey of life, but we can receive help from other people along the way. We will learn experiences and become mature as we overcome the challenges and obstacles. So we can receive some important concert and abstract rewards for go through the journey and defeat our crucial struggle. Similarly, in William Bell’s novel Forbidden City, Alex goes on a dangerous journey from innocence to experience. First, Alex begins in the innocence stage as he is naive, inexperience and pure-hearted. Next, Alex goes on a dangerous journey and overcomes his crucial struggle. Finally, Jack ends in the experience stage as he is mature, wiser about war, becomes experienced and receives his concrete and abstract rewards.
First of all, we see that Alex is in the innocence stage because he is naive, inexperience and pure-hearted. At the beginning of the story, Alex naively thinks that wars are like games and that everything is about control. But unfortunately, wars and battles are not a simple thing as Alex thinks they are. There are serious consequences behind the war that Alex has not notice about, for example, he does not know that many people will die in the war. As Alex likes the military stuff and history, Alex reveals, “it isn’t the killing and ghoulish stuff that interests me. It’s the battle plans and the strategy and the weapons. It’s like chess or curling or bridge — those are all games I really” (Bell 17). This quotation shows that Alex naively thinks about wars and battle plans are like games like chess or curling or bridge. Wars and battle plans are completely different thing from chess games because the consequences behind war and chess game are entirely different. Losing a chess game is not a big deal, it won’t cause physically damages to anyone; but losing a war or battle, many people will die and family will break up. Also, Alex is inexperience as he never leaves his home country and goes to other country, all his knowledge is from the books that he read. As Alex and his dad travel to China, Alex reveals, “The most frustrating thing is that I can’t really do anything because I can’t speak Chinese. As soon as I step outside this boring hotel I’m isolated — totally.” (Bell 44). This quotation demonstrates that Alex has never leaves home country before, he does not have the experience of being in China, which is an unfamiliar and brand new place for him and he does not know how to speak Chinese. He suffers because he is inexperience and does not know how Chinese, he cannot go anywhere and do anything except stay in the boring hotel. . Finally, Alex is pure-hearted as he thinks his mom left home and live herself is his fault. When Alex is 12 years old, he starts getting hot about military history and stuff, for this reason, he does not realize his mom has leave him and live herself. Alex reveals, “once asked me when I started getting hot on military, and until then I didn’t realize that it started around the time mom left home and went to live on her own... At first I thought it was my fault, but mom and dad… worked hard to convincing me it wasn’t.” (Bell 15). This quotation demonstrates that Alex simply thinks his mother left because of him. But actually this is not Alex’s fault, no parent will leave their children when they are naive and young. In that time, Alex is only twelve and he has a hard time understanding why his mom left home, so he thinks getting hot about military is the reason that his mom left home. Therefore, Alex is clearly in innocence stage because he is naive, inexperience and pure-hearted.
Second, Alex goes on a dangerous journey and faces his crucial struggle with the help of mentor. In Alex’s dangerous journey in China, Alex faces his physical...
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