The Swastika And The Beach Comparison

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A Never-Ending Lesson

In quest-related novels, there are always elements that are found that can be seen to be very similar. The short stories, "The Rope Swing, the Swastika, the Oldest Whale I Know" and "Okahandja Lessons", and the novel "The Beach" can be compared and similarities between them can be found and analyzed. A quest, in general, has a specific structure and seeing the same component in these different texts, forces a certain understanding to the stories and an ability to correlate journeys and accomplishments obtained by the protagonists. The journey regularly changes the main character, as he is faced with challenges and is attempted to overcome them, which results in him gaining an intellectual, spiritual or physical lesson
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He now has to deal with the consequences of his crush on his best friend's girl, but he doesn't know how to deal with this new found realization. This inner challenge can also be seen in another short story, "Okahandja Lessons", since both protagonist attempt to overcome an obstacle. This short story mentions a woman, who, due to a medical reason, had lost her leg at a very young age. She has never fully accepted herself since she seems to feel incomplete and not whole without her second leg. She goes on a work trip to Africa where there are a lot of disable people, just like her, and she fears what she will see upon her arrival. "[…] I knew a bit about the situation for disabled people in African countries. I was worried this would not be an easy place to visit." (p.55) She saw the terrible conditions these people had to live in, especially the disabled. Some were missing a leg and some were even missing two. Most of them were homeless, they had no money to eat, buy clothes or even find shelter. This was the protagonist's first realization; even though she had lost a leg, she was in better shape and lived in better conditions than all these people she encountered. She was forced to rethink why she, in the first place, wasn't able to accept herself with one less leg. Maybe she pitied them, or even wish she didn't look like them, but it was at that point that she became aware that maybe she wasn't any…show more content…
This attempt in accomplishment was seen in the novel "The beach", when the main character, Richard, sets off on an adventure to Thailand. His main goal was to escape his life back home in England. As we move through the novel, we see Richard questioning why he left his home. He wonders why he decided to escape to the beach, which is situated on an island where the outside world is completely forgotten. After leaving the beach, he knows that he will have to face life head on because he can't avoid it anymore. When you try to flee to avoid problems, they just don't go away. Problems are there when we come back even though we wished they weren't. Therefore, even though Richard tried to escape and attempt to solve his problems by leaving, he was unable to. An attempt to fix things that are broken isn't just done overnight. As seen in "Okahandja Lessons" the main character attempts to fix her confidence about her appearance. As mentioned before, she doesn't feel whole without her second leg and takes precautions, by putting on a smile every day or avoiding the awkward encounters that lead to conversations about her missing limb, to make sure nobody notices. For example, she finds herself taking showers in the middle of the night when everyone is asleep to
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