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Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Observed in Literature

In: English and Literature

Submitted By bland
Words 1814
Pages 8
The causes of anxiety, hyper-vigilance and a sense of rigidity seem to overshadowing characters in literature explored herein with a glance at their own mental angst. These psychosomatic effects caused by extremely stressful conditions were often seen in these novels, but in hindsight they’re hardly ever described or labeled as the mental disorders they likely are. Such examples of psychological trauma are used to set the stage for describing the individuals involved without much thought to the consequence of naming such disorders or what the diagnosis entail, such as post-traumatic stress disorder. While Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) has remained, by and large, an accompanying evil byproduct of war it is not solely reserved for the soldiers who fight in battle; PTSD can be observed condition in any human being that has ever experienced disturbing events like those seen during war and armed conflict. In the books A Long Way Gone, Novel Without a Name, and Slaughter House Five there are clear undertones and powerful warning sign of post-traumatic stress disorder revealed in the characters during the course of the novels even if the condition was unnamed.

In the book A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah, the principal character in a story and author of this novel clearly pronounces his own battles with post-traumatic stress disorder. Beah speaks of the war violating the peaceful and happy ways of life in his home, Sierra Leone while he was only 10 years old and of how he was force onto an expedition to find his family that morphed into bloody fighting and a retribution for their deaths and of pure survival. Beah is witness to death, despair, murder, rape, and theft and is later forced into the ranks of the army to battle back again the rebels that were ripping his homeland apart. Beah finds himself using various drugs along the way that only enhances his...

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