Coming of Age Essay
Around the world there are many themes that we find over and over in many cultures and from many periods in time. One of the reoccurring themes that everyone goes through in the lifetime is the theme of coming of age. This occurs when a young person goes through the transition from childhood to adulthood and has life experiences that matures a person. We all have experienced a coming of age story by reading them in books, seeing them on TV or in movies, or maybe even personal experiences based on ones culture.
Itâ€™s clear that coming of age is a crucial element of our self-representations and conceptions. Generally, all of living is a process of coming of age as seen in the novel, Catcher in the Rye. Holden Caulfield, who is sixteen-year-old boy with the mind of a ten year old. He thinks of innocence as important in the beginning of the novel. But later on in the book, Holden slowly grows to be an adult. For example, when Holden gets soaking wet by rain when he is watching his little sister ride the carousal he â€œfelt so damn happy all of a suddenâ€(213).
This symbolizes Holden entering adulthood because he realizes the happiness in life. He realizes that he is too big for the carousel and is happy that his sister is happy. Holdenâ€™s childish personality continued to wash away as he reached a stage of maturity. Over the course of the novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, Scout is taken from a position of innocence, in which she believes that she is safe and that there arenâ€™t many â€œbad peopleâ€ in the world, to the position where she has witnessed some of the bad things that have happened but realizes that she is not entirely safe.
That is tested at the end of the novel when Scout was attacked while walking home with her brother Jem. Similarities were show in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Hucks maturity begins to grow as he first starts to show emotions toward a runaway slave, and by the end of the novel, has grown up to the point where, when Jim, is captured, Huck decides to give up playing games after Tom is shot to ensure that he would get medical attention that he needed.
In an episode of Malcolm in the Middle it revolved around Malcolm trying to help his classmate Dabney get into a paintball match despite the resistance of Dabneys overbearing mom. Once Dabney unleashes years of repressed aggression, his mom comes around to try to drag him off. Dabney reacts back by saying â€œ Iâ€™m no longer your little boy anymore. Iâ€™m your little manâ€ showing that Dabney has matured and stands up and says what he believes. In the movie Edward Scissorhands, Edward is taken in by a family who he depends on.
The family teach him how to think for himself so that one day he can gain the independence that is necessary for him to go out on his own. Edward living off of the familys support and trying things for himself is a coming of age process in itself. When he starts acting out and making his own decisions he is transitioning into an independent mindset that eventually allowed him to make the choice of living alone and fend for himself. Roman Catholics believe that Confirmation â€œ.. completes the process of initiation into the community and it matures the soul for the work ahead..
During confirmation God the Holy Spirit comes upon the person, accompanied by God the Father and God the Son, just as he did at Pentecost. â€(Acts 2:1â€“4) Those who have been confirmed are called â€œSoldiers of Godâ€. This refers to their spiritual duty to fight evil, darkness, and Satan. In Nigeria, young girls known as Iriabo spend several weeks in â€œfattening roomsâ€ being pampered and wearing copper coils around their legs to restrict movement as part of a ritual marking their official transition into womanhood.
In Senegal, Bassari boys undergoing the Kore rite and are taken into a sacred forest where they experience a symbolic death and a return to infancy, a state of ritual purity from where they are reborn as mature members of the community. (Hipple) Ultimately, the coming of age experience is a very much so significant time in ones life. People have to continue to find themselves and explore who they are even after the coming of age experience. It has lasting effects on a person as it has an impact on our dreams and desires that we want to fit into our world.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.