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Prose Fiction (Novel) Essay After The First Death by Robert Cormier explore how Cormier has attempted to shape your response to terrorism in After the First Death.

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Introduction

Prose Fiction (Novel) Essay After The First Death by Robert Cormier 3. Write an essay in which you explore how Cormier has attempted to shape your response to terrorism in After the First Death. "One mans terrorist is another mans freedom fighter". This quote allows us to view the topic of terrorism from a much broader perspective. The word 'terrorist' has negative implications whereas a 'freedom fighter' is viewed as a hero. Robert Cormier attempts to shape my response to terrorism by maintaining a balanced understanding between the opposite sides and presenting terrorist activities from multiple perspectives. Prior to reading the novel, my response to terrorism had never included the terrorists' point of view, nor had I ever bothered to take an interest in their history, or the reasons for their radical actions. I was always prone to see things from the victims' point of view, and firmly believed that all terrorists were fanatics who had very low standards of morality, and no respect for the law. ...read more.

Middle

Because the writer reveals his gloomy background and depressing childhood, the reader is made to understand the reasons for him being drawn into the lifestyle of a terrorist. Cormier reveals through characters such as General Marchand, that the 'good guys' are not necessarily what they appear to be, and in fact, are capable of morally wrong behaviour no different from a terrorist. The leader of Inner Delta, General Marchand, who is supposed to be the 'hero' in the story, is eventually exposed as a sick man, who manipulates and sacrifices his own son in order to simply further his career. By placing his sons' life in extreme danger and allowing him to fall into the hands of the ruthless terrorists, Cormier reveals his brutality. The author cleverly reveals General Marchand, Miro and Artkin to be of similar kind, in their aims and ambitions Cormier not only presents the terrorists as angry, depraved lunatics, but also in the case of Miro, through his characterization, presents a likeable, obedient and caring young person. ...read more.

Conclusion

They almost share the typical 'father and son' relationship, where the son (Miro) shows a great deal of respect and obedience towards the father (Artkin). It seems a part of Miro's motivation for his terroristic activities is to 'impress' his father-like role model, Artkin. Another type of relationship is the powerful connection between Miro and his older brother, Aniel. Cormier displays Miro's strong compassion for Aniel and emphasizes his importance in his life. This affected me in such a way that I felt very drawn into the characters because such relationships are apparent in my life, and allowed me to see them as real 'human' beings rather than 'terrorists'. Clearly, Cormier's attempt to shape my response to terrorism in After the First Death has resulted in me forming an opinion of terrorism in a way that took me by complete surprise. Previously, my 'black and white' approach to terrorism has changed as a result of reading the novel. I now have a much more balanced approach and no longer view terrorists as immoral fanatics and instead, see them as human beings no different to us. ...read more.

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