Traveling to another country, and being situated in some dangerous situations opens ones eyes and helps ones gain experience. In the book Forbidden City by William Bell, Alexander jackson is a seventeen year old boy that travels with his father Ted who is a camera man that works for CBC news. In this novel Alexander Jackson goes from innocence to experience. He developed as a caring, responsible human being and grows up through his experience in China. Alex before his journey to China is a typical teenager. Therefore he gets some experiences that change his point of view during the journey.
After his journey he returns to Canada; however, he is not a typical teenager anymore. Alex before his journey to China is an ordinary teenager like the other ones. He enjoyes playing, watching TV, going out, and doing what ever a teen ager likes to do. One of his major hobbies is military stuff. Actually he is a military buff and he enjoyes playing with tiny leaden soldiers that we can distinguish by their clothes.
War in Alex’ mind is just a strategic game where leaders control the armies and change their tactics to conquer the land. The books that I read about this said the soldiers were lined up as if to protect the tumulus from desecration but I’m sure thats dead wrong. It has to be. You dont face towards what you ” re defending-any fool know that-you face away from what you ” re defending. You face the enemy.
(page 5, 6) In fact he sees a positive face of war that is intersting and entertaining much like in movies and games. When Alex goes to China he gets some experiences that change his life totally. During those days in China there is lack of free dom for people especially students that make them unsatisfactory. In China you didnt choose where you ” re going to work, Alex If you live in the country on a farm and you want to move into city you can’t… Here the news is managed totally. The chines have cynical but true saying.
(page 39, 44) Alex sees the students ask for more freedom and for basics rights; however, their government does not respond to their demands. When the students realize that government does not care about their request, they demonstrate. During this demonstration civilians also help the demonstrators because they know that the students requests are reasonable and also they know the government is corrupt. The powerful men and women in the party got special treatment in everything, from buying foreign goods in special stores that only they could shop in to housing to special hospital and more.
They made sure their relatives and children get good jobs and privileges. They sent their kids to universities in Europe, Canada and the states all at government expense. (page 91-92) When the government realizes that it can not prevent the demonstration, they use the force of army to prevent the riot. The army uses tear gas or even shoot ant people.
they do not allow demonstrators, even civilians, to talk to the army and innocent people like Lao Xu lose their lives because they want to stop the army. Suddenly Lao Xu burst from the curb and into the street running towards the soldiers just as they started to move forward again. He raised hid hands in the air as if he imagined he could hold them back all by himself. I could hear his enraged yelling, Are you insane What are you doing Stop the shooting. The soldier raised his AK 47. crack! (page 156-157) During this events alex turn from a pathetic person to a sympathetic one who cares about what is going on in the surrounding.
Because of this reason he sees himself responsible to tape all the happens and to smuggle it out. When Alex returns to Canada with lots of experiences he sees life with wider eyes. He is sorry for all of his friends that he has lost; in addition, he thinks that if ther was no war they would be alive now. His view about war changes, therefore he sees the war not just an interesting and strategic armies tricking each other. He realizes war comes up with much destruction that he did not know before. He does not see to the soldiers as toys anymore.
Indeed he hates the military so he destroyed all of his collections.” All the soldiers from all the wars melted down together into lead again.” (page 272) We see in this story Alex goes from innocence to experience by going to China. Alex before his journey is an ordinary teenage; however, when he goes to China and realizes the government corruption and students demonstration he sees the events wiser. After his journey he is not a typical teenage anymore; in addition, he is more sensitive and responsible. A human being should care about the others and similar to Alex that put his life in danger and smuggled the tapes out we have to be responsible for human being.