Christine Mailey-Journal Six-Reflections
I believe Esther has had the biggest influence on me during the reading. She is able to get Ishmael to confide in her. Ishmael is able to trust someone again, he has not been able to trust anyone since the war. Esther also helps Ishmael to come to terms with his involvement in the war. Ishmael is very ashamed of the terrible things he had to do when he was a child soldier. Esther repeatedly told him that none of that was his fault, he was just a boy.
I think Ishmael showed rehabilitation could take place. He was chosen from many boys to speak on his involvement in the war and his rehabilitation. I think it is possible for rehabilitation to work.
Although, it would be a little worrisome to have someone like Beah as a neighbor, I would have to trust he has taken all of the necessary steps to be a part of society again. Let's face it, we really don't know all of the dangers we live among in our daily lives. I think people should be given a second chance at life to prove themselves.
I think Beah's perseverance is remarkable. When faced with such enormous hurdles, he never gave up. Your family and friends may be your biggest support system, but there will be times when you have to count on yourself for your survival and outcome. When Beah was little his father used to say, "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 or she will die (pg. 54)."
I wanted to know more about Beah's outcome. I felt like, we became so involved in his life throughout the book, I wanted to know Beah was ok.
Ishmael Beah was born in Sierra Leone in 1980. He moved to the United States in 1998 and finished his last two years of high school at the United Nations International School in New York. In 2004 he graduated from Oberlin College with a B.A. in political science. He is a member of the Human Rights Watch Children’s Rights Division Advisory Committee and has spoken before the United Nations, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Center for Emerging Threats and Opportunities (CETO) at the Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory, and many other NGO panels on children affected by the war. His work has appeared in VespertinePress and LIT magazine. He lives in New York City.