It is as if we now live in a perpetual present where memory has currency only as a means of securing social standing. It is into this culture of the mundane, melodramatic and often downright stupid that Ishmael Beah's memoir A Long Way Gone is thrust.
When he is twelve years old, Beah's village is attacked while he is away performing in a rap group with friends.
Among the confusion, violence, and uncertainty of the war, Ishmael, his brother, and his friends wander from village to village in search of food and shelter.
Their day-to-day existence is a struggle of survival, and the boys find themselves committing acts they would never have believed themselves capable of, such as stealing food from children. Eventually, Ishmael is conscripted as a soldier by the army and he becomes the very thing he feared: The army becomes his family and he is brainwashed into believing that each rebel death may avenge his own family's slaughter.
The boy soldiers become addicted to cocaine, marijuana, and "brown brown," which give them the courage to fight and the ability to repress their emotions in times of war. Ishmael is taken to a rehabilitation center, where he struggles to understand his past and to imagine a future. The love and compassion he finds at the center from a nurse named Esther opens up an understanding and forgiveness within himself.
Ishmael is welcomed by his extended family in Freetown and is again saved by their support and kindness. Ishmael is invited along with other children of war to New York City to tell his story to the United Nations.
He learns that others like him have suffered and survived.
He meets Laura Simms, a storyteller and his future foster mom, and sees the importance of sharing his experience with the world in hopes of preventing such horrors from happening to other children. After Ishmael returns to Freetown, Sierra Leone, a coup by the RUF and the military ousts the civilian government, and the war Ishmael has been avoiding catches up with him.
After his uncle's death, Ishmael flees Sierra Leone for neighboring Guinea and eventually makes his way to his new life in the United States.His book A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, ), documents these years of his childhood.
Ishmael poignantly shares stories of his youth, his indoctrination into war and his journey back to regain his humanity. Nov 13, · As A LONG WAY GONE begins, Ishmael Beah is 12 and living with his mother and two brothers in a rural town in Sierra Leone, West Africa.
He loves dancing, rap music, and Shakespeare and can recite monologues from Julius Caesar and Macbeth.
A Long Way Gone, Memoirs of a Boy Soldier, by Ishmael Beah, is the story of a boy’s long and difficult struggle trying to survive a world enveloped in turmoil, death, and destruction. The novel follows Ishmael Beah, a twelve year old boy, as he experiences the civil war in Sierra Leone. Get free homework help on Ishmael Beah's A Long Way Gone: book summary, chapter summary and analysis, quotes, and character analysis courtesy of CliffsNotes. A Long Way Gone is the true story of Ishmael Beah, an unwilling boy soldier during a civil war in Sierra Leone. Normally a gentle boy, Ishmael is changed by war into a soldier who can commit brutal, gruesome acts. Trevor Noah and The World's Fakest News Team tackle the biggest stories in news, politics and pop culture.
The civil war that's gripping Sierra Leone still seems a long way off.5/5. Reading guide for A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah - discussion guide for book clubs. A Long Way Gone study guide contains a biography of Ishmael Beah, literature essays, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis.
This time we were a long way gone from Mattru Jong. A long way gone." Ishmael Beah (p, A Long Way Gone) This picture of footprints represents how far Ishmael has come from Mattru Jong. It represents his journey. I learned that the conflicts/challenges Ishmael was faced with made him stronger.
I also learned that the man vs. man. A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah, published by Sarah Crichton Books in New York in , tells the haunting story of Ishmael Beah, a child soldier during the Sierra Leone Civil War. The book begins in January of in Ishmael’s small village called Mogbwemo, located near Mattru Jong, Sierra Leone.