Our reading, “In His Time of Dying”, provoked many ideas within me. For those who have not read, Kendra Knight recalls her life while her step father slowly dies from cancer. She is not distraught over his slow death, and is completely distant from her emotions. Although she cared deeply for him and felt horrible about her suffering, she knew there was nothing she could do and that is future was doomed regardless of her feelings.
This reading was interesting yet emotional, and it made me question why exactly it was on our reading list. I realized afterwards that the emotions Kendra felt about her step father’s slow death is paralleled to how many refugees may feel about their situations. Citizens of a society where genocide is occurring most likely feel helpless about their fate. They care deeply about the problem and the situation, but a resolution may seem out of reach or even impossible, similarly to how Kendra felt.
Kendra’s step father, Jon, also embodied certain characteristics that may be similar to refugees. Although he knew his time was tough and out of his control, he stayed hopeful and optimistic. He still did what was best for those around him, and did not let his awful situation get the best of him. From the various biographies we have read, and movies we have watched, we have seen countless examples of selfless actions, especially from those who are in the worst situations.
This reading, when compared to the stories of genocide we have studied, help create a bigger picture meaning for our class. Although it was of extreme and vital importance to study the reasons why and how it occurs, it is always important to take a step back and recall the bigger picture meaning. In this case, the big picture is understanding the themes and ideas of help, hope, and love. Genocide, as well as a terminal health issue, cannot be solved or conquered without understanding and believing in those three themes. Our class has done an incredible job or remembering this big picture and applying them to other scenarios and situation. With only two weeks left before our trip, I am eager and excited to continue learning about the specific problems and instances relating to genocide, while always remembering the big picture as well.