Away and Lionheart Area of Study: Journey

Lionheart’ is an autobiography about a seventeen year old Australian boy, Jesse Martin, who circumnavigated the world solo on his yacht, ‘Lionheart’. It describes the physical obstacles of his journey such as the weather conditions and the state of the boat itself. Jesse experiences much personal growth during this journey and this is clearly represented through several key techniques. In the auto-biography, descriptive language is used to illustrate the exotic nature and scenery that Jesse is witnessing whilst on his journey. The sound of the monotonous beating drums sent them into a trance, enabling them to dance for tremendous amounts of time under heavy costumes. ” (p30) This enables the reader to experience the sounds, feelings and sights facing Jesse during his journey that may be beyond their own physical access. It creates empathy and also inspires others to undertake their own individual journey no matter what the destination as the physical journey itself is much more important than the reached destination. The development of the main character Jesse is also clearly conveyed through the use of autobiographical form.

It allows the reader to see Jesse from two perspectives. When we read the extracts from the diary we see him as a young man in the middle of his journey. When we read the autobiography we see him at the end of his journey after it has had a huge impact on his life. The Jesse who is writing the autobiography is a different man to the young man writing the diary. His journey changed him. “I experienced something I’d never felt before, a very strong spiritual feeling that spooked me. ” (p36). A reflective tone is conveyed through the use of autobiographical form.

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Jesse is writing with hindsight and reflecting as an adult, on the journey he has completed. This highlights the character growth due to the journey as the physical journey itself is much more significant than the reached destination. Formal register is used at some points of the narrative side of the text. It is never used in the diary entries. This emphasises how much Jesse has matured over the voyage. “I was aware that I couldn’t become complacent just because I was nearing the end. ” (p216). The common use of this language suggests that Jesse has been forced to mature very quickly to deal with the obstacles of his journey.

Jesse also constantly refers to problems as “conundrums” and a mistake as a “faux pas”. This formal language is solely used in the narrative of the autobiography, never in the diary entries, which highlights Jesse’s growth of maturity as he is writing looking back through the past. This reinforces the idea that the physical journey itself is much more important than the reached destination. Jesse’s experiences during his physical journey changed him. He learnt the true power of his inner strength, the importance of his family and has developed a deep respect for the power of nature.

The physical journey itself is much more significant than the reached destination. ‘Away’ is a drama script about the journey undertaken by three Australian families away from their home and everyday world to three different holiday destinations. Circumstances bring the three families together and through this situation personal growth is made possible. There are several techniques used to represent the journey and each can be considered individually. Symbolism is used by Gow to highlight the character growth and the obstacles overcome. The storm removes human order and control of nature.

This signifies the power of nature which Gwen struggles to deal with due to the lack of control she has over the situation. Coral and Tom light the bonfire on the beach; its warmth draws the characters that have been renewed such as Gwen, Vic, Harry and Coral. The symbol of the fire as the ancient symbol of life confers the redemption they have achieved and offers a sign of hope for their futures. Water also symbolises change. It is dark and has unknown depths whilst it can also be warm and life-giving. The development of each character displays that the physical journey itself is much more significant than the reached destination.

The cyclical structure of the play highlights the character development due to the physical journey overcome. The first scene of the play is the performance of ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ illustrates how the characters are trapped by ignorance and fear; their world and lives are paralysed. Each of their journeys exposes them to reality and a greater sense of freedom they can no longer hide in their everyday world from the truth. The final scene of the play is the performance once again on the school stage of ‘King Lear’. This represents the characters release and new freedom.

Their journey has been circular, the return transformed by the journey. The cyclical structure highlights the point that the physical journey itself is much more significant than the reached destination. Soliloquy is used throughout the play to convey the emotions of the characters, the obstacles they are facing and how they are facing these obstacles. Coral performs a moving soliloquy which highlights the great pain she is in over the loss of her son. She links Tom to her own son and expresses her longings through her characters behaviour throughout the play.

In act 1 scene 3 coral states “I had to wipe away tears. To wake up and find something that you want so badly. ” She also realises that something is wrong with Tom “that shadows were like bruises”. This demonstrates how Coral is finally dealing with the loss of her son. By comparing him to Tom she is giving herself some sense of closure and understanding that everyone is faced with death, she is not the only one. It’s time to move on. The change of Coral demonstrates that the physical journey itself is much more important than the destination reached.

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