Novel Flight by Alexie Sherman - Essay Example

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Identity is shaped by a combination of social condition and personal choices in life. The two aspects are inevitably influential in defining and determining one’s identity in the society. The novel, Flight by Alexie Sherman clearly shows how the two aspects can be involved in shaping one’s identity…
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Novel Flight by Alexie Sherman
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"Novel Flight by Alexie Sherman"

Society judges one by his actions; actions that arise as a result of choices one makes.Zits was considered a social misfit because of the many things he personally chose to do. For instance, he runs away from home while he is just eight-years-old; and at fifteen years, he decides to choose the path of alcoholism. After being arrested for pushing and punching his twentieth foster mother, Zits is imprisoned. In prison, he meets a white young boy called Justice. Justice preaches justice as vengeance. He brain-washed him and planted a revenge attitude in his heart. When Justice is released from the jail, he breaks Zits out of the juvenile prison and goes to stay with him in an abandoned warehouse. He hands Zits two guns and convinces him to use to shoot at people at a bank; all in the name of exacting justice. In as much as Zit was brain-washed, he had the option of refusing to give into Justice’s demands of going to rob the bank. In this case, he made a personal choice that changed his view of life when he started having hallucinations mid-way the robbery. In the flashback, we see Zits transforming into a number of different historical characters. At the age of twelve years old, Zits goes to Little Big as the Indian child, and he is forced to shoot an innocent person as a way of revenge for a soldier who almost cut his throat. He becomes a scout leader of a troop to revenge the killing of the settlers by the Indians. Later, he becomes an airplane pilot, Jimmy, who coaches people how to fly, a terrorist who plans to bring down a commercial plane into Chicago. He learns the futility of revenge. He also learns there is no need to hurt other people. He asks himself, “Why should people hurt one another like this?” (119). This shows that he was reflecting on his life and making personal decisions that would be of benefit to him. As an individual, Zits makes consequential choices that help him restore his life. He learns the significance of the choices one makes and the effect they have on others and self. The brief experiences through the different historical characters, allows him to encounter the firsthand effects of the anger, violence, hatred and the revenge motives. At some point, he points out that he was ashamed of his acts. Zit says, “I like to start a fire. And I’m ashamed that I’m fire starter. I’m ashamed of everything, and I’m ashamed of being ashamed.” This feeling revels that decision of changing his character was desired and was also possible. Through the experiences, Zits learns empathy. When he comes back from his “flights,” Zits find himself to have stood in the bank all this time. He has two choices at hand, to either pull out his gun and fire or walk away from the shame, guilty conscious, and consequences he was bound to face forever. He decisively ponders on his past and the strong conviction which was a reality at that time. This conviction had informed him that he needed a change in his mischief, destruction, anger and revenge motives. This individual decision was his turning point of his life. He was to define his life by his own decision at that moment. This individual decision changes his life and dramatically transforms his morality and perspective for the better. He realizes that people ends up empty if they are filled with hate and ends up lonely if they push away everyone. It also dawned on him that revenge Read More
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