A Long Way Gone

Ishmael uses many cultural references throughout the memoir. What were some examples of this and what do you think his purpose was in relating these details to the reader?

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Ishmael Beah uses memories during difficult times in order to help with his own survival. He had many memories of his family, and most of those memories revolved around the family's culture, and the world they lived in. There were the stories told by the village elder about the moon, and also the stories of his grandfather that referred to forest lore.

Holding onto his culture, and the memory of happier times, helped to sustain him through his trials. His culture was an important part of who he was, and the memory of that culture, in addition to the memories of family all aided in his recuperation and healing.