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Where the Spirit Lives - analysis

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Where the Spirit Lives The movie where the spirit lives is a very touching story about a teenaged aboriginal girl and her brother, who are kidnapped-legally under the laws of the Canadian government, and were brought to a residential school to be educated to be non-Indians. There, they were forced and misled into giving up their language, heritage and very identity. But the girl's finds a friend in one of her teachers who became her mentor. She eventually escapes from the school and tries to find her way back to her family. In the residential schools there were many abuses that had taken place. There were physical, mental and sexual abuses done to the native children who were sent there. In the start of the whole course of action the children were kidnapped from their family and home. Then they get shipped off to different residential schools sometimes separating brothers and sisters. This beginning of the process in itself was a mental abuse. The children had no idea what was going and they were terrified. Not to mention the separating of brothers and sisters. It would be horrible enough to get separated from your home but to separate you from your only connection left with family is awful. ...read more.


Its horrible for physical abuse to happen to anybody but the fact that this happened to children makes it doubly horrifying. These are not adults who can at least defend themselves a bit but little children who cannot defend themselves. Another form of abuse that was the sexual abuses done to the children by both male and female teachers or significant others towards both the male and female children. In the film one of the young girls in the school was sexual abused by a female teacher. This combined with the fact that she was being kept away from her parents eventually lead her to running away to follow her tribe but she could catch up with them and she dies. Sexual abuse is particularly damaging to a child who feels guilt and ashamed at their selves and could eventually lead to suicide in one way or another. There were positive concerns towards the children. Some of them were good and other concerns exercised were the basis of the abuses that were exercised. The basis of the creation of residential schools was basically concern for the native people in that they thought they were pagans and were sure going to hell. ...read more.


Many of them got influenced by the cruelty that was happening but others were torn between doing what they believed was right and doing what the system told them to. Some of them also got attached to their students and had a hard time letting them go. At present time people have seen their follies but as a result the public is closely monitoring teachers if they do any sort of abuse towards their students. This adds a pressure on the shoulders of a teacher to constantly not step on anybody's toes. The minor people including us are also impacted upon by the events that have happened in the residential schools. However did we fool ourselves into thinking this was right? If we are capable of such cruelty then, then we can be capable of doing it again. Children are our future, teach them well because they will lead the way. They are next generation of adults who will govern our land. There's also this feeling of guilt that one feels at these events whether we had part in it or not. What was done to those kids is inhuman. We'd like to think it never happened but it did and we who know about it have the responsibility of making sure that it never happens again. Mary Antonette Uy February 28, 2002 ...read more.

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