“Unconsciously we all have a standard by which we measure other men, and if we examine closely we find that this standard is a very simple one, and is this: we admire them, we envy them, for great qualities we ourselves lack. Hero worship consists in just that. Our heroes are men who do things, which we recognise, with regret, and sometimes with a secret shame, that we cannot do. We find not much in ourselves to admire, we are always privately wanting to be like somebody else. If everybody was satisfied with himself, there would be no heroes” (Mark Twain, 2013).
Chronicles of Irish history will enlighten us of the tales and chains of events that have transpired in order for our country to be represented as it is today. Strong, peerless…show more content… Sands feels his sacrifice and his decision to go on hunger strike will be justified by the emergence of a new wave of people fighting for republicanism. “Out of the ashes, guaranteed there will be a new generation of men and women, even more resilient, more determined” (Hunger, 54.18). He is perceived as a leader among men, evident in the scene in which they attend mass in Hunger, transmitting messages of encouragement and being the recipient of external instructions.
The self-sacrifice of the rebels of 1916 and the hunger strike deaths of Ashe, MacSwiney, McCaughty and others provided the societal need of role models for self-immolative martyrdom in Northern Ireland during the 1970s and 1980s. Sands, and the nine other men who died with him in hunger strike, had faced a predicament similar to Pearse and the rebels of 1916. Pearse had vowed to release Ireland from British rule and believed that this could be accomplished only by a blood sacrifice. Sands had vowed to set the republican prisoners free from their categorisation as criminals, and he too was convinced that only a redeeming act of self-sacrifice would achieve this. Irish history had provided him and his fellow republicans with the role models to emulate. (Sweeney, 345)
In Hunger, the prisoners desire to be categorised as republican prisoners as opposed to criminals was further intensified through Thatcher’s