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Island of a Thousand Mirrors
A stunning literary debut set during the Sri Lankan Civil War
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Choice and free will

Created: 09/15/14

Replies: 10

Posted Sep. 15, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
LeahLovesBooks

Join Date: 04/08/14

Posts: 47

Choice and free will

Did Saraswathi have any choice(s) other than joining the army and becoming a martyr?


Posted Sep. 16, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
mariannes

Join Date: 12/17/12

Posts: 206

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RE: Choice and free will

It didn't seem like she had a choice if she wanted to live. Soldiers were grabbing girls and forcing them to join. She was ruined for marriage by the rape, and she was beautiful enough for any man to overlook her past.


Posted Sep. 17, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
pate

Join Date: 03/15/13

Posts: 27

RE: Choice and free will

I don't think she had a choice, certainly not in that place or in that time. Had she not joined the army on her own, she most likely would have been forced to join. Her family was being pressured and girls her age were being taken and forced to join, so it seems it would have happened anyway at some point. As for becoming a martyr, it would be easy to say she had a choice, and she chose to pursue becoming a suicide bomber. But until a person has experienced the horror and atrocities that Saraswathi did, and without any kind of emotional, family, or cultural support, it is totally understandable that she felt she had no other choice.


Posted Sep. 18, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
lynneb

Join Date: 08/23/11

Posts: 82

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RE: Choice and free will

It was interesting the way the author had us follow Saraswathi when her friend Parvathi, who was spoiled, killed herself and how Saraswathi at that moment thought how could she do it. She thought she could have had other choices. Then Saraswathi found herself in the same situation. Perhaps she could have continued her schooling as her teacher tried to encourage, but it appeared that there really wasn't a choice because of the culture and their feelings about a girl who had been "spoiled". It may have become necessary for her to join The Tigers even if the rape had not happened. There were not really any choices for girls in Sri Lanka at this time.


Posted Sep. 19, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
djn

Join Date: 05/19/11

Posts: 82

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RE: Choice and free will

Where do choice and free will begin, and coercion, constraint, and duress end?


Posted Sep. 21, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
rebeccar

Join Date: 03/13/12

Posts: 310

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RE: Choice and free will

I believe that this book shows how much LACK of choice exists in parts of the world. Especially for females.


Posted Sep. 25, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
bettyt

Join Date: 05/12/11

Posts: 174

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RE: Choice and free will

She really did not have a choice. Her family was pressured into giving her up. There probably would have been retribution against her family if she had not joined up with the army.


Posted Sep. 25, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
deeh

Join Date: 03/03/12

Posts: 171

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RE: Choice and free will

Her only choice other than joining the army was death. I am not certain that she made the right choice, in that she died anyway and took so many with her.


Posted Sep. 25, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Gin

Join Date: 10/21/12

Posts: 24

RE: Choice and free will

Such a philosophical question seems out of place in a situation where choice is just a construct. Saraswathi was not welcome in her family or community because she was raped. She had to join the army to find a place. Did she have to become a suicide bomber? Is it a natural consequence of being brain washed? But, I don't think it was a choice.


Posted Sep. 26, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
SusanB

Join Date: 04/28/11

Posts: 7

RE: Choice and free will

Her choice was to live, so by doing that she had to join the army. It is hard for those of us in the free world to realize just how little choice she really had, tradition and circumstances left her with no where else to go.


Posted Oct. 01, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
mal

Join Date: 09/09/13

Posts: 155

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RE: Choice and free will

The poor girl was a walking dead woman. Innocence stolen, culturally shunned, she virtually delivered to the revolutionaries. Her family urged her, unbeknownst how deeply wounded she was, so very heartbreaking. Harboring so much hate for the enemy and herself, she was beyond broken. A true causality of war. Such a shame. Her choice through her eyes....be the predator not prey resulting in the extreme and esteemed role of martyr in the name of the cause and it's enemy.


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