A Long Way Gone

The story of Ishmael Beah

Internal Characterization

Before the rebels attacked his home province, Sierra Leone, he was a bright, positive and gentle boy who was interested in rap music, but the war twisted Ishmael and made him find out he was capable of terrible things. At different times during the war he was forced to make terrible choices, choices that would haunt him for the rest of his life...

Historical Connection

Like many children throughout history Ishmael has become a child soldier, he has been forced into the thick of it and will soon see the horror of war. He had no choice, either help the government in the war or leave the village and get shot down by the rebels and he knew that his best chance at survival was to chance it with the government and fight back against the rebels.

Some of the child soldiers


Definition- a selective fire, gas operated weapon developed in the Soviet Union. A very common weapon found in the hands of irregular forces such as the rebels fighting against the government. Many child soldiers use this weapon due to being able to use the weapon easily and that it's very effective at what it does.


Definition- Revolutionary United Front

The RUF was the cause of the civil war that shattered many peaceful life styles and scarred thousands of people for life in the Sierra Leone Providence. If the RUF hadn't ever formed life would've kept going for Ishmael and he never would have had to do terrible things or be haunted for life.