Walking Backwards written by Catherine Austen is a novel written in a form of a journal. Twelve-year-old Josh shares his emotions after losing his mom from a car accident. His mother had a snake phobia, and as she was driving, a snake found its way in the car, leading her to crash into a tree. After losing his mother, Josh now has to take care of his four-year-old brother, Sammy, and do some house chores such as laundry and cooking because his father is too occupied with building a time machine. Throughout the novel, Josh deals with different types of emotions that have affected him since his mother’s death.
Terence Tootoo was twenty-two years old when he commited suicide by a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. Only three years younger at the time was his brother Jordin Tootoo, who suffered tremendously because of this incident; the death of Terence was one of the main reason why Jordin began to abuse alcohol to an extreme level. Jordin explains the support Terrence had for him saying, “Terence always told me that he wanted me to do what I loved… I wanted to stick to our goal. We loved playing hockey” (Jordin 106). Terence always wanted Jordin to be happy, and that is why Jordin dedicated his first NHL hockey season to his brother Terence and stenciled his brother’s name on his hockey sticks while playing the sport for the entire year (to be happy for his brother).
Cipher in the Snow” is a short story in which Jean Mizer, the author, displays a heartbreaking story about the death of a lonely withdrawn teenager. Cliff Evans, Jean Mizer’s main character experiences being ridiculed by classmates, invisible to teachers, and mistreated at home. Then, on the way to school Cliff asks to get off the bus and collapses in the snow and dies. The Principal asks to the school’s math teacher to tell his parents and write the obituary, but he doesn’t even remember him even though he was listed as Cliff’s favorite teacher. Which makes the math teacher wonder if he didn’t die from a broken heart and that everyone was responsible in some way.
Miles ‘Pudge’ Halter in Looking for Alaska by John Green is looking for his Great Perhaps. While the book doesn’t state it, and Miles himself might not know, but he found it in Alaska Young. She is his Great Perhaps, the biggest thing to have ever happened to him, the reason Miles was meant to leave his public school and go to Culver Creek. Alaska Young began Miles’ life. On page 5, Miles says, “I was after a Great Perhaps, and they knew as well as I did that I wasn’t going to find it with the likes of Will and Marie,” showing that he wasn’t content with his life back at home, with his family and school and friends.
This intrigues Miles- so much so, that the journey he chooses throughout the book is based on Rabelais’ dying words. Miles’ goal is to find his “Great Perhaps,” and he believes boarding school will allow him to achieve his goal. Miles is unsure of what the Great Perhaps is when he first attends the new school. He believes there is more meaning to life and what it has to offer. Shortly after his arrival, Miles develops a relationship with Alaska Young.
In an attempt to find more in life, Miles Halter, decides to attend a boarding school in Alabama his junior year of high school. Despite being nervous about making friends, Miles is instantly taken in by his roommate who is nicknamed the Colonel. The Colonel then introduces Miles to a group of students that becomes his close friends and ironically nickname him Pudge even though he is very skinny. This group familiarizes Pudge to his new campus, as well as pranks, smoking, and drinking. Among Pudge’s new friends is Alaska Young, with who he is obsessed with.
Australian-Canadian horror film The Babadook shows the impacts and overall results that pent up grief can have on your life. Widowed mother Amelia is left with her son Sam after her husband, Oskar, died in a car accident. Sam begins to have fits and the intense need to protect those around him from imaginary monsters. After reading a mysterious book found on the shelf, it would seem that not all the monsters Sam is imagining aren’t so imaginary after all. Now constantly haunted by the Babadook, Amelia must face griefs she has buried in order to save her son.
In the novel, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part- Time Indian by Sherman Alexie, Arnold Spirit, otherwise known as Junior, demonstrates empowerment by leaving the reservation he lives on to find hope in an all white school called Reardan. First and foremost, Junior shows empowerment by simply taking his teacher’s advice. One day, after Junior had hit Mr.P in the face with a textbook, he found Mr. P on his doorstep ready to have a conversation. However, Junior thought he had come back for his revenge but was the complete opposite. Mr.P said to Junior, “You’ve been fighting since you were born...And now, you have to take your hope and go somewhere where other people have hope”(Alexie, 43).
Throughout the film, Ordinary People, the Jarrett family deals with sudden severe tragic news. When the news was received of their son Buck getting in an awful boating accident, the family became a mess. The relations in the family for each family member became weak, due to lack of communication. Beth, Calvin, and Conrad all could have related back to the conflict management skills to help them as a whole. Mother Beth shows the side of violence in the conflict managing side.
In a song, an obsessed fan writes to his favorite music artist for the third time, hoping his hero will write back. In his letters he talks about why he identifies with him. When no response comes, he sends another letter, this time more frustrated and angry that he hasn’t gotten a response and that he waited for hours in the cold and didn’t get his autograph at a concert. When again he gets no response, the fan puts his girlfriend in the car and commits suicide by driving over a bridge’s rails. A person can be an innocent fan, and then lose that innocence when he overreacts when things don’t go his way.