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Adolescence in The Master of Disaster by Guy Vanderhagae

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Adolescence marks the turning point of an individual's life, establishing the foundation of their development. It is during this phase that individuals leave behind the comfort of childhood and enter a reality beset with new perceptions of life. There are many stages of life, each enclosing its own distinct characteristics. As evident in the short story, The Master of Disaster, written by Guy Vanderhaeghe, adolescence involves growth as an individual, both physically and emotionally. Although each phase has its own challenges and difficulties, adolescence proves to be the most difficult stage of life to overcome. Through examination of the situations in the story, it becomes apparent that adolescence involves experiencing emotional conflicts between friends, searching for one's identity amid a period of change and overcoming the negative influence of peer pressure.

Adolescence is a stage of life, overwhelmed by emotional conflicts

between friends. It is a period of time where emotional instincts are

weighed more than good judgement, when making decisions that will

alter the outcome of the future. As evident in the story, there exists

a strong emotional bond between Bernie and Kurt, "Whatever I withheld

from Hiller, whatever would have been unspeakable in the company of

the others was confided to Kurt Meinecke." (Vanderhaeghe, 59) It

is apparent that trust is the foundation of their friendship. Trust is

the firm belief in the reliability, truth and strength of an

individual. However, Bernie decides to betray this trust, in choosing

not to advise him of the intentions of Norman Hiller, "Norman was the

flashy type, the guy who collected followers, collected them the way

he did baseball cards and Superman comic boo...

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...ents experience a time of

mixed emotions between friends. They tend to make decisions, not with

their head, but instead with their heart. Furthermore, adolescence is

the turning point, through which individuals shape their identity.

However, this proves to be difficult during a period of change,

mentally and physically. Finally, within this transition, young people

have the tendency to find reassurance in their peers. Nevertheless,

this can often lead to negative peer pressure. The need for acceptance

exists, so they are inclined to be vulnerable to influence. In a fast

paced society, where constant change is inevitable, the transition

from child to adult proves to be the most difficult. It is at this

point in life, that adolescents shape the outcome of the future.

Work Cited

Vanderhaeghe, Guy. Things as They Are? Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1992.
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