Evanston Township High School and the Family Action Network (FAN) invite community members to attend “Radiance of Tomorrow: An Evening with Ishmael Beah” at 7:00 PM on Tuesday, March 18, 2014 in the ETHS Auditorium.
Ishmael Beah’s book, A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier tells the story of his life in Sierra Leone as a child soldier. He relates how, at the age of 12, he fled from attacking rebels, describing how his homeland became unrecognizable through violence. By 13, he had been picked up the government army and under its coercive tactics, including the use of drugs, he found himself capable of committing terrible acts. At 15, Beah was taken to a UNICEF rehabilitation center for child soldiers in Freetown, and when he was 16, the civil war hit Freetown. He fled as a refugee to Guinea and eventually to the United States, where an American family adopted him. Beah is a 2004 graduate of Oberlin College with a degree in political science.
For this first-ever Family Action Network event at Evanston Township High School, Beah will discuss his life and his new book, his first novel, Radiance of Tomorrow. In Radiance of Tomorrow, he examines postwar life in Sierra Leone through the eyes of two friends who return to their village and try to repair what the civil war has destroyed. The author hopes readers will learn something about the strength of human spirit by reading this book. “We all find joy and radiance and a reason to move on even in the most dire of circumstances. Even in chaos and madness, there’s still a beauty that comes from just the vibrancy of another human spirit.” His memoir is used in many high school curricula. In a broader sense, his work can be used to facilitate discussion on how control over one’s circumstances affects the human spirit, consequences of violence, finding one’s purpose in life, family relationships and environment.
This event is free and open to the public. A book signing will be held following the event. CPDUs are available for education professionals. Visit www.familyactionnetwork.net for more information.