Out of Shadows, a historical fiction book by Jason Wallace tells the story of Robert Jacklin, a teen whose family moves from England to Zimbabwe in the 1980s. There, he faces rampant racism inside and out of his boarding school against the black Africans. I am Malala, a memoir by Malala Yousafzai is about Malala’s life in Pakistan’s Swat Valley where she and others face the daily threat of the Taliban. She becomes an important campaigner for girl’s rights and later survives a Taliban shooting that just barely misses her brain.
Breaking away from traditional values can change a person’s thinking, ways of life, and the way they’re viewed by others. Breaking away from traditional values can change a person’s thinking. In Out of the Shadows, most of the white people in Zimbabwe are oblivious to the hardships that the native Africans go through. However, Robert finds out how the African children are treated by whites when he visits a village full of injured kids. “‘They’re not games, they’re barbaric, the things we’ve done. Cruel. ’” (Wallace 233).
After realizing how bad he and other whites treat the children, he breaks away from the traditional value of stomping over black people and acting like they are lesser people. This changes his thinking from feeling like they are good for nothing, to realizing how oppressed they are. In I am Malala, Malala values going to school very much, as it is uncommon for a girl to go to school and learn instead of taking care of her family. The Taliban, a large terrorist group that takes over the area, says girls cannot go to school, but she ignores them.
‘They can stop us going to school, but they can’t stop us learning. ’” (Yousafzai 161) Malala shows that she doesn’t want to follow the traditional values of her Muslim, male-dominated culture. Her thinking changes to wanting to go to school as a girl more than anything else. Breaking away from traditional cultural values changes your thinking. Your daily decisions, actions, and your entire way of life can also change because of this new thinking. Breaking away from traditional values can change a person’s ways of life.
In a country where racism is rampant, Robert’s family is a lot nicer to Africans than the average person. However, this comes with problems, like when Robert had to hide the live-in maid from his friend Ivan. “‘Matilda,’ I urged. ‘Where the bloody hell is she? ’” (181). By ignoring the traditions of being mean to Africans, and instead letting his maid live in the house, he had to be extra cautious around everyone else. This changed his way of life because by breaking with the traditional values, he now has to try harder to fit in and not be shunned by other white people.
When times got tough in I am Malala, Malala had to be extra careful just to not be killed when going to learn. The Taliban had only let certain grades of girls go to school, so she had to fake her age and not be caught. “I was in Year 5, and some of us pretended we were younger than we were. We started going to school again, dressed in ordinary clothes and hiding our books under our shawls. ” (Yousafzai 166). When Malala turned away from cultural practices, she also had to change her ways of life.
Instead of following her culture and staying at home, she defied her traditions and secretly went to school. Breaking away from cultural practices changes your daily life and the way you do things. This will make others view you differently, because you change the way you do things. Breaking away from traditional values can change the way a person is viewed by others. Robert, from Out of Shadows, tried not to be noticed for being a non-racist. However, his peers and even his teacher began questioning his loyalties. “‘Or are they going to keep pushing you around?
Maybe you don’t know how to stand up for yourself. ’” (Wallace 127). Robert’s teacher (who was later fired), Mr Van-hout, expected him to “stand up to the blacks” because he viewed Robert as a weakling. Because Robert broke away from white Zimbabwean traditions and was non-racist, he was viewed as weak by others. When people weren’t agreeing with the Taliban, the Taliban acted like they were infidels and not real Muslims. Even though the Taliban killed and harmed people, they viewed anybody against them as not real Muslims.
The Taliban think we are not Muslims but we are. We believe in God more than they do and we trust him to protect us. ” (Yousafzai 237). By breaking away from many traditional Muslim values, like girls staying home and girls wearing a hijab, Malala was viewed as an infidel by the Taliban. She was still a Muslim, but she was viewed differently by turning away from her traditional cultural practices. Many related things can happen from breaking away from tradition and cultural values. It can be change of thinking, way of life, or the way somebody is viewed by others.
They all are results of breaking away from traditional views. In conclusion, breaking away from traditional values causes change in many ways. It can change a person’s thinking, ways of life, and the way they’re viewed by others. This is shown in the novels Out of Shadows and I am Malala by characters Robert and Malala, who both broke away from traditional values and caused change for themselves. Robert broke away from anti-black racism, and Malala broke away from traditional Pashtun and Muslim culture, which made both of their lives change.