The boy in the Striped Pajamas is a riveting novel by John Boyne. Set in World War II, Berlin, but mainly Auschwitz. The Boy in the Striped Pajamas focuses on the humanizing the Holocust and through the best way possible, Innocence, Childlike Innocence. Bruno, our main character leads us along his journey in discovering some of the horrors in his world that he is oblivious to. This piece will focus on the theme of childlike innocence and how that relates to the rest of the world historically and to me the reader.
Childlike Innocence is a very powerful and constructed thing. Mainly for Bruno, him being the oblivious and innocent to the fact that his father was killing people no matter what the motive, all comes back to the idea that hatred is just a learned behavior. Bruno being sheltered to the very best his parents could do, brought him up no recognizing the signs that were all around him. Shmuel being a prisoner himself knew plenty more about the worlds darkness compared to Bruno. Examples of Bruno illustrating his innocence was with the phrase, “why does everyone where pajamas?” Something like this shows that Bruno has no clue about the people behind this fence and why they are actually there.
Relating this novel to the world can be done quite easily. Wired into children’s minds are the concept of simplicity and love. They haven’t been affected to the point were they mirror what they experience and see. Adult minds have changed and adapted to their constantly changing environments and the need to succeed for the pleasure of an external motive. The Boy in the Striped Pajamas was very well constructed. From the beginning, Bruno narrated the story, showing everything for what it was from his perspective, Childlike innocence. This gave a greater feel and a stronger connecting for the reader to attach to. The reader, might I someway connect to this piece through their personal experiences in recognizing things that they previously didn’t. Things that were either harmful in their life or in others. This is a powerful way of latching on to the reader and pulling them along on the journey that the story has to say.
For me this novel was a roller coaster of emotions. Initially starting with a comfortable straight, waiting for the turns to happen and then ending with a sudden stop and feeling no heart beat. The Boy in the Striped Pajamas is an amazing story that I hope everyone gives themselves the chance to indulge in.
The Alchemist is an international bestseller by the renowned author
Paulo Coelho. “A fable about following your dream.” The Alchemist encourages the reader to pursue their dreams and find their personal legend. Paulo Coelho writes a tale following the journey of a young Andalusian shepherd named Santiago. He has a recurring dream of treasure hidden by the pyramids of Egypt. Believing it to be prophetic, he pursues help discovering along the way, the language of the world and the idea that everyone has a personal legend.
The main theme in this novel is pursuing your dreams and following letting your heart guide you. Santiago matures into this throughout his journey finally trusting in his heart to guide him. This theme can be related to anybody. Every person that picks up this novel will read it differently due to their experiences. A young person coming out of school will read this and take in the theme, dreaming of themselves achieving their aspirations. A older person could look at this with guilt knowing they really never followed their heart, and now only have that slight hope of one day achieving it, keeping it alive.
For me, the Alchemist is motivation bound together. A tale of exiting your comfort and trusting what cannot be guaranteed. This is a story that shows of blessings and rewards in trusting your heart and living what your are written for. The Alchemist gives me as a reader a new look at my life. It has opened my eyes to questioning my motives and which path I’m going to take. This I believe is what Paulo Coelho really prepared for his readers, perspective.
I one hundred percent desire that everybody picks up this book and lets it float them from page to page, rolling them up and down on it’s waves of excitement, emotion and encouragement.
The immigrants poem by Sam Greenlee is written to challenge the world’s views or at least Great Briton’s, on racial injustice and discrimination. This story argues from the perspective of African descent British people. They wonder why they are still seen as immigrants in their own country, solely because of the shade of their skin. The racism that people face in their own country is shameful. According to some people it doesn’t matter if you were born and raised there, you are still an immigrant in that place. The narrator in this poem asked “how bout that German Lady layin up in Buckingham Palace?” This is asking, how about the everybody else that is actually an immigrant, you are still immigrants even if your skin is “fish-belly white.”
This text connects with the world historically too. It talks of the Norman invasion as how they settled on lands that were not of their own. Through history other races and cultures have come to other countries and in little ways shaped what we know as today, England, New Zealand, Australia and pretty much every other country in the world.
For me this is just how New Zealand today is. Although compared to this poem, New Zealand is the other way around. We are working very hard to look after the native people of the land, “te tangata whenua”, Māori. Even though there are many different cultures of people living and calling this country home, we still acknowledge the original people that lived here first. Also in New Zealand there are instances when kiwi’s (New Zealanders) of Asian descent are seen as immigrants and are told to go home. This is really sad that people still have the nerve to treat others in a certain way solely based on their physical features. Since we continue to receive many Asian tourists, people continue to think that all Asians are tourists in our country, and due to the many road accidents caused by Asian, especially Chinese tourists, it really frustrates locals.
If I was in the position of not being wanted or recognized in my own country, I would feel very disconnected and lost. Sad too that people continue to discriminate, putting down people where they don’t deserve it.
I really recommend this poem as it challenges views that you might not have realised were there. Often we can still blame groups of people for faults of others.