A Long Way Gone

How did violence both physical and psychological effect beah throughtout the novel

long way gone book

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Although the violent pursuit of rebels across Sierra Leone traumatized Beah, it is not until he is turned into a killer that he truly loses his innocence. To emphasize this change narratively, Beah stops utilizing flashbacks to his childhood in the memoir after he is indoctrinated into the army, citing his inability to remember anything good. Beah details the manipulative tactics used by the commanding officers to create killers, which have the cumulative effect of eradicating childlike emotions or actions. Beah's experiences in the war strip him of his humanity but the relief efforts help restore the dreams he had forsaken when he was 12. After the war Ismael's emotional scars do not heal, at the UNICEF camp or the United States. THe flashbacks remain and the nightmares linger.