Thursday, December 5, 2013

Fishbowl #6: A Long Way Gone, Chapters 18 and 19

A few reminders if you're looking for an A for the day:

(A) Bring at least one quotation and/or page reference into at least one of your responses.

(B) Explain your thinking thoughtfully and thoroughly (try to avoid the one-sentence response).

(C) Keep it professional, including the usage of proper grammar and spelling.

(D) Comment frequently from the beginning of the conversation to the end.


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Enjoy!

94 comments:

  1. Do you think that Ishmael would of been happier at the rehab center or do you think he's better off with his Uncle?

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    1. I think at his Uncle's because he is family and he has a chance to learn of his past.

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    2. I think he was starting to become happy there being with people that went through the same things at the rehab center. I also believe that Esther had a big part of that. He loved her. She was the first person that really cared. Although being with family is also good. The rehab center was where he was comfortable.

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    3. Ishmael has already spent a good amount of time at rehab, it's good that he's going back to his uncles house because he'll be able to feel more comfortable reflecting on his past. Not only that but he learns about what happened to his immediate family.

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    4. Ishmael would be better off with his uncle because he has family. In the interview he said that one of the reasons he was dragged into the war was because he had no family and the other boys seemed just like family. So it would be better for him to be with people who accept him.

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    5. I would say better off with his Uncle, because his Uncle is his family and sometimes it's better to be with someone that you are related to instead of being with strangers.

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    6. He is better off with is uncle because that like one person who really cares about him and Ishmael. An he feels more of a connection with his family that is helping him get better.

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    7. I think either situation would have been helpful in different ways. His uncle could act as a father figure and could help him learn about his family, but Esther could have helped him along because he loved her.

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    2. I don't believe he is thinking about the long term, his priorities are all in the near future. So maybe he does, but he doesn't care at this point

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  3. On pg. 167 it Esther says to Ishmael, “Think of me as your family, your sister” Do you think that Ishmael views her as a part of his family, why or why not?

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    1. Yes I do, because she was the only person he completely opened up to and was comfortable with sharing his thoughts, worries, nightmares, ect. She never judged him about his past and her acceptance made Ishmael willing to trust her.

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    2. Yes, because she was the first person who really helped him and started to make him better after the war. She was like his siser because of everything that he told her.

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  4. How long do you think that it took Ishmael Beah to get to the point of being able to openly talk about his experience on TV?

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    1. Probably a year or two to be able to openly talk on tv

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    2. I think right when he decided that he was going to write a nover on his experience, that he would be comfortable enough to discuss it on tv interviews. Because sharing his story is the same whether it's through writing or talking.

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    3. Probably until he had accepted what happened to himself and realized that that terrible part of his life is over. And that what he did was evil and inhuman. But that is not the person he is anymore. He chose to move on and not carry the guilt and sadness from the war.

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    4. I think it took him awhile. He must have really struggled with it in the beginning, but I think he slowly got used to it. So I'm saying yeah probably a year or two after publishing the book.

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    5. At first, there was no way he would do that, since he was really fragile to not be able enough to talk about his past.

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  5. Pg 189 "After I left the center, Mambu went back to the front lines, because his family refused to take him in." Is there really more hope in going into the war than staying in Freetown at the center?

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    1. I think that there is more hope for some in the war because they will be shunned when they return, and some people are too far gone to go back. Some of these soldiers are probably enjoying what they are doing.

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  6. On page 170 Ishmael starts dancing. Do you think dancing takes his mind off what is happening?

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    1. Yes I do, it bring back memories of his childhood when he was happy, free to be a kid. Its kind of like therapy in a way.

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  7. Since he found his uncle, do you think that he could start his life over with him?

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    1. No, i think that what happened was so traumatic that it will have an affect on him forever.

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    2. I bet he is because ever since he's been in this chaotic war, he would just want a little piece of hope for him to strive for.

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    3. Not really, cause the memories are still with him and it was pretty bad, but I think that he is accepting it and not hanging on to the past so it's like he is starting over.

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  8. What does Ismael mean when he says, “At the end of each laugh there was always some feeling of sadness that I couldn’t escape.”...?

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    1. He means that no matter how hard he tries to forget the past he can't escape it.

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    2. I think he says this because he's trying to say that he is doing his absolute best to move on from the past, but it is constantly sitting in the back of his mind haunting him.

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  9. Why did Ishmael's Uncle Tommy call him his son?

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    1. I believe its because Uncle Tommy is trying to be a father figure. He is trying to guide Ishmael to the right path.

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  10. In the interviews he is so happy and cheerful what in his new life do think made this possible.

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    1. I do think he is truly happy because he believed himself and he knew he was strong enough to overcome his past. He knows he is at a good place and that his future is bright.

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    2. Ishmael shows that he's not only ready to talk about his past but also move beyond it. When the interview asked why he is qualified to go to the UN, he quotes, "Well, I am from the part of the country where I have not only suffered because of the war but I have also participated in it and undergone rehabilitation. So I have a better understanding, based on my experience of the situation, than any of these city boys who are here for the interview." (pg. 187)

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  11. On page 167 "Okay, you can be my sister - temporarily." In this quote was he ecstatic to have someone to be like his real family member?

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    1. No, I do not think Ishmael was ecstatic. When you lose a family member; in Ishmael's case, his whole family, it is hard to accept someone so close into your life like that. It may take time for Ishmael to fully recover from his experiences.

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  12. How do you think Ishmael felt when he figured out that his uncle was alive?

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    1. He was happy but not excited where it says on Page 173 "I didn't know what to do in my happy state."

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    2. I think he would be overjoyed because he finally has a family member that is alive that he can be close to.

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  13. How has hope and love saved Ishmael in chapter 18? He finally has a family to be comforted by (Uncle Tommy) and the strong friendship with Esther.

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    1. I think he finally realizes that he can recover and that he doesn't have to run or hide from anything anymore.

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    2. I think he feels like he has something to live for. And that there is a way to be happy again, maybe not right away but as time progresses he can come to terms with himself and realize that the past, needs to stay in the past.

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    3. I think that he sees that he has people in his life that truly care and that there is something worth living for. With time and support of these people can get through and come to terms with his past.

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  14. With Ishmael's uncle now is his life do you think he feels hope again?

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    1. He begins reaching out to his uncle and accepting the future he's offering. Ishmael seems more stable now, and his violence and anger are subsiding. On page 192 Ishmael's aunt quotes, "Wherever you are going, you will need to smell like your home. This is my perfume to you."

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  15. Will Zainab be someone that will help Ishmael get through his recovery?

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  16. Do you think that since Ishmael gets to be with family, he will have an easier time recovering?

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    1. I think in a way he will have time to recover, since his uncle was part of his childhood and Ishmael would have to force himself to move forward and not look back from his past.

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    2. I don't think that it will be easy, but it will be nice to have some people who will always love you. So it could speed up the process of moving on.

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  17. Why did Ishmael have relationship issues with girls? Is he reflecting too much on the past and not living in the present?

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  18. On page 187 it says "At some point during my walk, a convoy of cars, Military vans, and Mercedes-Benzes festooned with national flags passed by."

    With the government parading through town while there is a war going on seems a little fishy. Why does the government do nothing about the war?

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    1. Because I think they don't want to accept the war and everything that is going on.

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  19. On page 180 Ishmael leaves the village and goes with his Uncle. What was he feeling at that point knowing that he was leaving everybody but moving on to a safer place?

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    1. I feel as if it's the other way around. He's leaving a safe place that helped him recover and moving on to his true family where he can start his life over.

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  20. How will Ishmael stable into his kind of new family?

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  22. On page 173 "I didn't know what to do in my happy state"
    How come Ishmael can't get excited he is just flat emotion all the time.

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    1. Well the war can control how a person feels and he hasn't been happy when he was slaughtering people. But you start becoming emotionless and immune to everything that's happening around you.

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    2. He is still recovering from drugs and dosen't know what to do when he feels pure emotions, and the violence has probably desensitized him to alot of emotions toward other also.

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  23. If this happened to you what would you want to do. Therapy or being with your uncle?

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    1. I think it would just depend on how you feel at the time. If you feel comfortable and believe that your past is forgotten and that you have a bright future ahead then I would move on to my uncle's house. If I was still living in my past and doubting my humanity I would continue on with therapy until I get to a better state of mind.

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  24. Will Ishmael want a family of his own one day?

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    1. I think that he has recovered enough that he may want to, even though he may be afraid.

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  25. Why didn't Ishmael want to tell Allie about his past? Did he care about there relationship?

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    1. I think that he didn't tell her because he isn't ready to and doesn't want to scare her off because of what he has done.

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  26. Can Ishmael truly accept Esther "temporarily?" I think he needs her in his life, but hes afraid to let her in because he hurts people, and he realizes that.

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  27. Do you think that Ishmael is worried about losing more of his family members, and that's why he is so skeptical of getting to know and love people

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  28. How long will it take Ishmael to realize that he probably won't see his family again?

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    1. I think he knew once he found out that he was leaving with his Uncle

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    2. I think he has already realized it but Ishmael is a very hopeful person so it is not affecting his as much because he still thinks that one day he will be with his family again.

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  29. Do you think that Ishmael is recovered from the indecent because he can talk about it without getting emotional?

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    1. Actually, I think he is the exact opposite, he's numb to it, and recovery will be the next step

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    2. I don't think you can fully recover from an experience like Ishmael went through, it will always be in the back of his mind. But he has definitely moved on and believes that he is better then his past and it's not worth getting emotional over.

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    3. I think that he is probably healed as much as one can after something like this happened. He probably has nightmares, and possibly some from of PTSD, but he can live a good life and deal with it.

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  30. pg. 172 "Like I said, we cannot go back. But we can start from here. I am your family and that is enough for us to begin like each other," Do you think in some way knowing that he had family that would take him in and care for him made it easier for him to move on?

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  31. On page 163 Ishmael states that everybody is able to overcome everything that has happened to them in the war. Ishmael makes this sound easier than it really is. How hard of a process would this really be and what kind of person would it take to do this?

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  32. Is Ishmael wanting to become a symbol to boy soldiers his way of healing?

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    1. I think that is one of his ways of healing because he is glad to share to everyone the horrors of being a child soldier and by doing this he is hoping that it gets more attention and it will eventually stop.

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  33. "Thank you for coming to see me, I really appreciate you offering me a place to stay. But I don't even know you."

    -Ishmael Beah, pg. 172

    This shows how skeptical Ishmael is towards people he meets

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  34. How has Ishmael's rehabilitation been fueled by hope in chapter 18?

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  35. On page 179 Ishmael says " I was worried about what to do when my nightmares and migraines took hold of me. How was I going to explain my sadness, which I am unable to hide as it takes over my face, to my new family, especially the children." Was Ishmael scared about leaving the village? Did he doubt that his life would be better?

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    1. Yes, because I think he is worried that his stories are going to scare off the only chance he has to be with family.

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  36. On page 179, Ishmael says that he "lays in bed staring at the ciels asking 'Why have I survived the war?'"
    How do you think losing even the bad people around him has made him feel guilty for not losing his life? What parallels can we draw between his guilt and Amir's?

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    1. I believe that because he has taken some many life's and done horrible things that he doesn't feel like he deserves to live.

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    2. Well if you think about it. He had more than a thousand opportunities to die. So he is wondering if all these opportunities arose how come the odds came out in his favor?

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  37. How has not growing up with a father or even knowing much about his father affected Ishmael throughout his life?

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  38. Do you think Ishmael really wants to go back to Sierra Leone, or do you think he misses his childhood? Do you think that he will be okay if he goes back, or will he feel conflicted?

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  39. Is Ishmael reciting Shakespeare a way for him to connect to his father? Is Ishmael ready to let go and move on?

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  40. Did the interview that Ishmael had make him happy the situation because he was a special person?

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    1. I assume being important made him happy, everyone wants to be famous, but more than that I think that this was a way to round off the novel.

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  41. Does Ishmael wish he had a father throughout his life? Does it affect him or make him sad?

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