Wednesday, October 20, 2010


I have read a lot of books lately so I had trouble picking one that I wanted to blog about, but I finally decided on Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson. Of the books I've read it is probably one of my favorites. It's a nice, fun read based along the lines of a fantasy novel, but it also deals with some issues that are applicable to our society.

The book starts out in a bleak world filled with ash and hopelessness. In this world ruled by an emperor called the "Lord Ruler", The skaa, who are slaves, are forced to work under horrible, inhumane conditions in the field. Those who live in secret in the cities form thieving gangs, trying to survive in a society that dictates their entire life. One of these thieves is a girl called Vin who has no family, no home, and no ability to trust. Her sole goal is to survive, simply living under her oppressors. This is until Kelsier saves her from her life on the streets. He is different from the others; he is someone who has the natural ability to lead, someone who will not stand for the inhumane treatment of the skaa. Driven by duty and a troubled past, Kelsier recruits Vin and other gifted individuals into a group designed to overthrow the current government. Kelsier brings something to the skaa that they have never had before: hope. With the help of Vin and the others, Kelsier works toward a goal that seems impossible The beginning but becomes more and more feasible as the novel progresses. Slowly Kelsier's group begins to shake up the government that has existed for hundreds of years, using the royalty as pawns to sew discord and chaos amidst the inter-workings of the government. People are murdered and others framed all for the sake of freedom. The Group faces many challenges and has to learn that not everything is black and white.

So here are some questions that the novel brings up:

1) What decides which group of people/ which person gets to be in control? What determines which groups are persecuted?

2)What does it take for someone who has been oppressed for most of their life (or all of their life) to fight back? Is it something that only certain people are capable of doing or can anyone start a revolution?

3) Does the ends justify the means? Should the oppressed be able to do just about anything in order to gain their freedom?


Erika B 13-14 said...

In response to question number two, I believe that anyone who has been oppressed for most of their life is capable of fighting back and starting a revolution. No set people are singled out for fighting back; anyone is allowed to. What determines if someone will revolt is if they have the initiative and leadership needed to lead a group of people to fight back. Some people are not born leaders, though, and may have to work to gain that leadership ability, but it can be done and I believe that anyone can do it.

David G. 13-14 said...

I agree with Erika that anyone can start a revolution. In most cases it takes a lot of leadership ability and most of all courage. I think that once someone builds up the courage to start a revolution that anything is possible and that leadership is not always the most important thing.

Cassie M 11-12 said...

3. I don't think the end ever justifies the means. If people try to make a change for example, while using the same method to achieve that goal as the oppressor, they are no better than the power they are trying to revolutionize. The oppressed should be able to gain freedom without losing the ideals that they hold. If they do commit cruel acts and more violence than necessary, what good can come of it? Is freedom worth the price of losing oneself?

Megan D. 11-12 said...

I definately thought the same thing as cassie when I was reading the book. That the ends do not justify the means. In order to create a new government one should not use the violent and oppresive ways of the old regime or else you create a government that is like the one that was over thrown, or worse.