Exodus, by Leon Uris, is a novel of genuine Affirmation. One of the most prevalent of the affirmative themes is the idea of growth. Many of the characters learn a lot about themselves, and change tremendously in a positive way. Earlier in their lives, these characters decided to live their life one way, but throughout the book they change, and join each other to unite. Fighting for their common religion and fundamental rights brought them together in a way that is barely imaginable.
In Exodus, Mr. Uris shows that a common belief can bring people together, and which leads to personal growth. During the course of the story, the characters who show the most growth are Ari Ben Canaan, Kitty Fremont, and Dov Landau. Ari Ben Canaan undergoes change through his relationship with Kitty. Ari is what is known as a sabra. A sabra is actually a small fruit which is hard on the outside and soft on the inside. This metaphor is used to describe young Jewish freedom fighters, because of their hard exterior. But inside, what drives them is their determination and deep emotions. Ari Ben Canaan fits this description. What is different about him is that he is at the very extreme. His exterior is hard and completely unemotional, and he finds it impossible to get in touch with any of his emotions. When Ari was 14 years old, while bringing grain to a nearby Arab village, he was beat up by a gang of Arab boys and his grain was stolen. After that incident, his father, Barak Ben Canaan, taught Ari to use a bull whip and defend himself. At 15, Ari joined the secret Army of Self Defense, the Haganah. A few years later, Ari’s young wife Dafna was brutally murdered and raped by Arabs. Instead of responding violently, ...
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...ing on. I’ll make her proud of me." (page 597). Karen helped bring out the change and growth in Dov, and because of this growth, he can go on after her death. The characters of Ari, Kitty, and Dov, all start out with certain problems... Ari who is unable to express emotions, Kitty who will not take sides, and who at first latches onto Karen trying to pretend it is her daughter, and Dov, with the numerous traumas in his past. It is only by helping each other that they are all able to go on... Ari and Kitty can finally say they love each other, Kitty believes fully in the cause, and she doesn’t need to have Karen, and Karen helps bring out Dov’s personality from where he had buried it so long ago. I think this expresses something about the human condition, that during hard times, people will help one another in order to be able to go on, and by doing this, they grow.
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