Isolation in Ender's Game

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Barbara Sher is quoted saying, “Isolation is a dream killer” which is a perfect summation of Ender’s lonely journey through an isolated childhood. Ender’s Game is a science fiction novel by Orson Scott Card about a young boy named Ender Wiggin who is taken from his family at the age of six for rigorous training that ultimately leads the entire human space fleet against the alien race, the Buggers, that threatens to destroy all of mankind. Card makes it clear from the very beginning Ender is alone in all this. It is precisely this that is needed for the transformation Ender must undergo to carry the weight of an entire race on his shoulders. Isolation becomes the primary element that contributes to Ender’s success as a leader because it instills self-reliance, strength, and above all else, empathy. He realized that no one is there to help him, no one is coming to his rescue, and only he can be the one to save them all. One key component that is produced through Ender’s struggles at his young age is self-reliance. Ender is born unto a family where he is seen as an outcast; he’s a “third.” In a world where population control is major concern, a third-born child is looked upon in disgust. He is isolated even before he is brought into the world. John Kessel reveals his insights into Card’s interpretation of Ender’s exploitation when he says,” Orson Scott Card presents a harrowing tale of abuse. Ender’s parents and older brother (. . .) either ignore the abuse of Ender or participate in it” (Kessel 1). No one contributes more to this abuse than his older brother, Peter. Along with his birth, jealousy and hatred are especially common towards Ender. This disapproving outlook is particularly apparent from Peter. Peter let’s Ender know hi... ... middle of paper ... ...is enemy, he became the most ruthless and yet most compassionate commander the world has ever seen in all the wars the human race has withstood. Above all, however, isolation is the tool that made all the attributes transparent and viable to Ender and to the I.F. Beyond the war, Ender became more than just a tool to be used; he became a savior. A savior of not only one, but two different races bent on destroying each other. Ender became the very definition of Hope. Works Cited Card, Orson Scott. Ender's Game. New York: Tor, 1991. Print. Sinha-Roy, Piya. "'Ender's Game' Explores Complexity of Youth, Isolation and Warfare." Reuters. Thomson Reuters, 30 Oct. 2013. Web. 21 Mar. 2014. Web. Novels for Students. Vol. 5. Farmington Hills: Gale, 1999. Print. Willett, Edward. Orson Scott Card: Architect of Alternate Worlds. Berkeley Heights, NJ: Enslow, 2006. Print.
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