A Long Way Gone and The Bite of the Mango are two stories written about the same war - and its effects - from the two different perspectives of a young boy, Ishmael and a young girl, Mariatu. Although both novels have their differences, when compared, they come together to create a wider understanding of how the civil war in Sierra Leone affected all kinds of people in ways both comparable and dissimilar. In both The Bite of the Mango and A Long Way Gone, main characters Mariatu and Ishmael are forced to mature at an extreme pace by going through several, very different experiences caused by the same war. In the majority of The Bite of the Mango, Mariatu is at the young age of fourteen, but before then, she is just twelve years old, living in Sierra Leone with her family. When talk about the war begins to spread throughout her town, the citizens begin a practice put in place in case of a raid by the rebels. “The first time it happened, we abandoned our homes and took nothing with us, hiding in the bush for several days as we listened to our stomachs moan in hunger” (Kamara and McClelland 19). During these drills, they would hear word spread about rebels nearby, then pack some things in a bag, leave their homes and hide in bushes for days on end, sometimes starving themselves for fear of coming out and being raided by the rebels. However, her childhood is ripped away from her abruptly when she is raped by a close family friend. This is when she faces her first traumatic
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1. The Bite of a Mango by Mariatu Kamara and Susan McClelland, is a powerful story about the experiences of young Mariatu Kamara, a Canadian refugee from Sierra Leone. The culture of Sierra Leone during the 90’s and 2000’s impacted Mariatu’s life and how she ends up in Canada. One aspect of the Sierra Leonean culture is that young girls get married and have children at a very young age. When Mariatu was only 12 years old, an older man named Salieu wanted to marry her, but she rejected him. After that, while Mariatu was all alone at her house, Salieu came in and raped her, making her pregnant. She later gave birth to a baby, Abdul, who died due to malnutrition. Mariatu getting raped by an older man shows how the Sierra Leonean culture impacted her life because, in the West, this would not be acceptable, and Salieu would have been punished, although in the book, he is later shot by rebel soldiers. Next, another culture aspect of Sierra Leone is that a civil war is going on during Mariatu’s time there. Rebels and soldiers alike were attacking and destroying the country. One day, Mariatu had to go to a nearby village to get food, where rebels captured her
“When I was seven I had an answer to this question that made sense to me….if I was the hunter, I would shoot the monkey so that it would no longer have the chance to put other hunters in the same predicament” (Beah 218). A Long Way Gone is a memoir of a child soldier who is the author himself Ishmael Beah. Beah around the ages of twelve to thirteen grew up in Sierra Leone during its civil war. During his story, Beah talks in a tone that is straight to the point, however many devices help the reader imagine his loss of innocence. Beah uses a series of flashbacks, symbols and motifs to illustrate his loss to his readers.
The catastrophic war in Sierra Leone included all ages that were hurt, amputated, or killed right outside of their own houses. After reading the two books, The Bite of the Mango and A Long Way Gone, there were some similarities and differences the two main characters came across in their books. Living through this event was a very deplorable time for victims. The two books, The Bite of the Mango and A Long Way Gone, are both similar and different in how the two main characters are both victimized but differently because of their gender.
Monique and the Mango Rains is a memoir about a friendship that develops between Kris Holloway, and a midwife in the village of Nampossela, Mali. Kris Holloway served in the Peace Corps and was assigned for 2 years to be stationed in Mali. Kris was trained to “give health demonstrations, repair wells, build fuel-conserving stoves, plant trees, and protect the shoots from the ever hungry mouths of goats” (11). Kris meets and assists Monique Dembele in her struggle to improve health care for the women of this village and surrounding areas. Monique, having apprenticed for two years as a midwife, and studied for nine months in a health services program, is the only health worker in the village. She
The Bite of the Mango speaks about the war in Sierra Leone in the 1990s and is through the eyes of Mariatu Kamara, a female and amputee, while A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier is written by Ishmael Beah, a boy soldier that lost everything. They both were casualties to one of the most brutal civil wars; however, their experiences were different due to gender.
Monday morning, Sally, a twelve-year-old American girl, is woken up by her father. As she gets ready to go to school, her mother hands her a backpack and lunch with a quick kiss goodbye. Meanwhile, Zarina, a twelve-year-old Sierra Leone girl, wakes herself up to get ready for work. Her aunt says good morning as they both head from their home to the cassava fields. Both of these girls have a traditional family setting. In America children in a traditional family grow up with both biological parents and any siblings they have. In Sierra Leone, the setting for both The Bite of the Mango and A Long Way Gone, children of traditional families live with aunts and uncles as well as many children from different parents. These different views of
A prominent theme in A Long Way Gone is about the loss of innocence from the involvement in the war. A Long Way Gone is the memoir of a young boy, Ishmael Beah, wanders in Sierra Leone who struggles for survival. Hoping to survive, he ended up raiding villages from the rebels and killing everyone. One theme in A long Way Gone is that war give innocent people the lust for revenge, destroys childhood and war became part of their daily life.
Since the start of the Sierra Leonean war in March of 1991, innocent civilians have been the primary target of the Revolutionary United Front (RUF)’s wrath. The people of Sierra Leone have faced significant problems due to the invasions and attacks by the Rebel Forces and are the main population that is being affected by this group’s disapproval of the government. One person who experienced profound changes in her life due to the start of this war is Mariatu Kamara, a victim of a Rebel attack that cost her both her childhood and her hands. Throughout her memoir, “The Bite of the Mango,” she is faced with numerous traumatic events and meets an abundance of people who were very significant in her life and some of whom helped her survive the war. Kamara also gives the reader a variety of themes to use as a foundation to understanding war life, which also serve to help readers learn more about life, grow as people, and rise above to help others in need. Mariatu Kamara has not only changed the lives of people all throughout Sierra Leone by giving them a voice and an outlet to share their experiences, but has also proved to be an inspiration for countless amputees around the world.
In the introduction of A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah, he writes, “There were all kinds of stories told about the war that made it sound as if it was happening in a faraway and different land. It wasn’t until refugees started passing through our town that we began to see that it was actually taking place in our country” (Beah 1). During this statement Beah says that he is completely oblivious to the war around him. These people living in Sierra Leone had adapted to the war to the point where their perception had been altered. With this memoir he shares his experiences and obstacles he faces throughout the war to become a beckon of hope in this despairing country. Ishmael uses his social skills, timely luck, and emotional strength, to find the courage to overcome these adversities and survive in and out of the war.
Manipulation is a key factor in the outbreak of a war. Ishmael Beah discusses the several instances of manipulation that occur in Sierra Leone. In his memoir, A Long Way Gone, Beah discuses his life during the civil war outbreak in Sierra Leone. He explains how the affects of war affected in both a positive and negative connotation. Several publishers seek a better understanding of the struggle that Beat faces during the time of the civil war. Throughout the novel, Beah discusses the damage Sierra Leone goes through. He learns valuable lessons throughout his time in combat, which he seeks to share with others. Although Beah describes the importance of soldiers in a time of war, he believes in his memoir, “A Long Way Gone”, that awareness should
In A Long Way Gone, Ishmael Beah, a former boy soldier with the Sierra Leone army during its civil war(1991- 2002) with the rebels of the Revolutionary United Front (RUF), provides an extraordinary and heartbreaking account of the war, his experience as a child soldier and his days at a rehabilitation center. At the age of twelve, when the RUF rebels attack his village named Mogbwemo in Sierro Leone, while he is away with his brother and some friends, his life takes a major twist. While seeking news of his family, Beah and his friends find themselves constantly running and hiding as they desperately strive to survive in a land rendered unrecognizable by violence. During this time, he loses his dear ones and left alone in the
Children exposed to violence within their communities are left with emotions of hopelessness, insecurity, and doubt. Historical events such as the war on terrorism, wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the tragic events of September 11th have had a detrimental effect on the entire nation, including the children. Although every child is not directly affected by the aspects of war, it somehow has an emotional effect on all. The involvement of a nation with war affects every individual differently, whether it is out of fear, anger, doubt, hope, or love. In the short novel A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah, he narrates the story by telling his own involvement in the Civil War in Sierra Leone as young boy and the many issues he faces while living in
1. Man v.s. Society One challenge that Ishmael Beah faces throughout the novel A Long Way Gone was trying to escape the war while also searching for his family. The source of this hardship Ishmael faced was the civil war between the Sierra Leonean government and the RUF (Revolutionary United Front), or rebels. On Pg.23 Beah writes, ”No one was able to think clearly...
Sierra Leone was in dismay, but the majority of the world was unaware. People were running from burning villages, from warriors high on drugs, and from death itself. Even though the majority of the country was running, until the war came it was not thought of. Villagers imagined that the war was far away in another land, but it was killing people and ravaging their villages left and right. Beah noted that as soon as he left the areas torn down by war, no one seemed to care. The war was a story, something heard but not believed until people saw it. The man and woman who questioned Beah were ignorant towards the war, causing Beah to become enraged at their inquiries and inspire him to write A Long Way Gone.
Childs soldier in conflict, Mariatu Kamara along with Susan Mcclelland together wrote the book called The Bite of the Mango. Mariatu Kamara who was born and raised in the west African nation of Sierra Leone wrote this book based on her experience living in brutal civil war with the help of Susan Mcclelland who is a freelance magazine journalist based in Toronto. Mariatu Kamara harrowing experiences as a child victim of war and the aftermath are the subject of her story The Bite of the Mango. Throughout the book Mariatu went through hardships and got to the point wanting to commit suicide multiple time. She show us that even through time of pain and discouragement, if you keep your head up and always look forward you will successfully find joy in life. The moral and ethical issues that the story raised were how in so many countries in poverty, many innocent citizens are caught in the crossfire of violent parties fighting against the government. Mariatu and her whole village are one example of the thousands of innocent citizens who were caught in the crossfire, many of which lost their hands and were told to go to their president and show him. The problem with the violent groups injuring these innocent citizens then telling them to go show their president, is that many of these citizens are uneducated and poor and did not even know what a president was. Mariatu Kamara led a carefree childhood growing up in a small village in Sierra Leone, until the unfateful day she was sent