A Long Way Gone

Ch. 5-8

Internal Characterization

Throughout the section of the reading, Ismael faces many conflicts. The main problem he experiences is hunger. With the little money he had with him he can't find a way to make use of it. Everyone starts to store their food and not sell it, which makes his money useless. With the struggle to find food, Ishmael and his friends end up stealing two stalks of corn from a little boy, something they would never do if it weren't the situation. After Ishmael and his friends get separated, Ismael lives on scraps of food and the same fruit common throughout the forest.

Historical Connection

In the book, the rebels are taking over villages and taking people, mostly young boys, into their military by capturing them. The rebels are very harsh and war-like people, who like to settle things in a deadly matter. Their actions in the book are very much like what ISIS is doing today. Roaming towns and killing anyone who is against them.

Vocabulary Words


Throughout the section, Ishmael spends the majority of his time in the forest. He goes into nearby villages to look for food or any sign of the rebels every now and then. He also spends a good portion of his time working on a farm.


1. A big conflict that Ishmael faces is being lonely. The whole time he is in the forest he is lonely. He has no one to keep him motivated to stay strong and no one to just talk to to make the situation better and to not think about what is going on.
2. Another huge conflict that Ishmael faces is a problem in the society. The rebels have different beliefs than the government and they decide to go to war. The villages are chaos when the rebels invaded and Ishmael sees death and the separation of families first hand.