Short Story: The Go-Between

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The Go-Between

Human rights. A bitter, yet ironic, tale about a world we all know, but still refuse to accept or deal with. “The Go-Between” is a short story about an African man who is striving for a better life, a safe life with a bright future and without the fear of financial issues. Dreaming and hoping for a better life can be good thing, but if you put your expectations too high, then it is really going to hurt when reality comes and smacks you in the face. Limbs torn off, multiple escape attempts, violent encounters. None of which sounds particularly pleasant. This short story is built upon several topics, where I believe the most important one, is Human Rights.
“The Go-Between” was part of a collection of short stories that were written
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For instance, as I mentioned in the beginning of this analysis, the man describes himself as a “small, slight man”, which is followed up by him stating “The Cameroon Swimmer. Philosophical Professor Me.” This strongly indicates that the protagonist is living a tragic life, and that he has to keep a positive and happy mind-set in order to cope with reality.

He is living a life between two completely different worlds; Europe and Africa. Physically he does not belong anywhere anymore, he is stuck between two continents. This is emphasized by the title of the short story, “The Go-Between”, because no matter what the protagonist does, he can only go to a place in between. With that said, I believe that Ali Smith’s intention with the story is to shine a light on the ironic fact that we are celebrating an occasion that is still so far away from deserving celebration. Her short story is an ironic observation of the lacks in executing these rights, even 60 years after they were implemented. After reading this story you are very startled, and you get a sudden profound gratitude for living in a country where these rights are as familiar as the bike-ride to school. It is not fair that some countries are not respecting these rights, and that is what Ali Smith is telling us through “The

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