Essay on Theme of Cruelty- I'M Not Scared

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Theme of Cruelty Throughout the novel, I’m Not Scared the hero, Michele, realises that the adult world is not as innocent and caring as he originally thought. Niccolo Ammaniti’s novel takes the reader on a journey through an innocent and too trusting world seen through the eyes of a nine year old boy, Michele. It is set in Southern Italy in the hot summer of 1978. Michele finds a dirty, incoherent boy, Fillipo, chained in a hole hidden outside his village, but is too scared to speak of it. He begins to connect the boy, his own impecunious parents, and an unexplained visitor, with a headline kidnapping that has the whole country on edge. Michele discovers that people around him, particularly his father, are capable of cruel actions.…show more content…
This shows he is neither able to stand up to the other boys or do the necessary dare. Showing his childishness he relies on his imagination to see him through. The sentence structure moves quickly from one imaginary animal to the other, allowing the reader to picture a scared little boy who must imagine himself “as light as a lizard” in order to complete the dare rather than stand up for himself. As the novel progresses, Pino’s cruelty towards others becomes clearer when Michele makes the connection of his “secret discovery” of the child with his idol. He overhears the kidnapper’s conversation and his father saying ‘“Two ears we’ll cut off. Two” whilst making “the scissor sign with his fingers.’ By hearing him say this, Michele becomes scared and untrusting of people around him. His father’s cruelty towards Fillipo is apparent when Michele describes Fillipo’s appearance when he sees him “…caked with mud… eyelids were sealed with blood… lips were dark and split… All his teeth had gone black”. Pino’s cruelty and deception destroys the remains of Michele’s innocence and any respect Michele once had for him. The final way in which cruelty is portrayed throughout Ammaniti’s, ‘I’m Not Scared’, is through Pino’s final act of evil. Michele’s father harshly endowed a heavy weight on Michele’s child’s shoulders. “…swear that you will not go back there…swear on your fathers head…if you go back… these people will kill him and it will be your fault”. Michele has to face
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