A Long Way Gone Coming Of Age Analysis

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In the novel “A Long Way Gone”, there are endless amounts of evidence to be found explaining why this novel is a “coming of age” novel. So, what exactly is “coming of age”? Typically, this is a story that is made up of three different factors: young characters who experience a crisis, absent or negative adult relations, and the incorporation of an epiphany moment. The story of Ishmael Beah could not be an any greater representation of this category of story, because at 12 years old there is no peace that could be described in his childhood simply because peace was absent. As mentioned previously, the first factor of this “coming of age” story is the experience of a crisis. In all fairness, Ishmael’s whole childhood was a crisis. He lived a crisis every day to the point where taking the lives of other, and watching the blood shed of his peers was not worth thinking much of, because he knew it would happen again. The young men would give their best effort at being kids but there was never enough time. Ishmael says, “Sometimes we were asked to leave for war in the middle of a movie. We would come back hours later after killing many people and continue the movie as if we had just returned from intermission. we were always either at the front lines, watching a war movie, or doing drugs. There was no time to be alone or to think,” (Beah 124). This is the life that so many 12 year old boys were living and to this day, just like Ishmael, they are left scarred from the events
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