As the conflicts in the book center around Cedric's inner struggles and interaction with others, his growth as a character often relate to the development of the book's themes. The main theme of the novel - the importance of making correct life choices when defining one's identity - is all about such lessons. The specific decisions Cedric makes are detailed further in this section; for now it suffices to say that as a bildungsroman, A Hope in the Unseen follows Cedric in his crucial years of growth by tracking the decisions he made, right and wrong, towards academic achievement and emotional maturity. His stumbles are examined in as much detail as his successes, as Cedric tries to learn from what he did wrong and not repeat the same mistakes.

Thematically, Cedric's decisions to combat adversity aren't the only ones we witness. The choices made by other people in the book are often contrasted against those of Cedric's, often as a counterpoint to the decisions he makes for himself. The most obvious example is Cedric's father, Cedric Gilliam, who despite his college-level education makes poor choices that land him in prison and keep him estranged from his son. It is only when Gilliam starts making correct choices that he is able to not only correct his own life, but have a productive bond with Cedric Junior. Cedric's mother Barbara Jennings also..........

The theme of education is played out as a series of learned mistakes. That is, Cedric has to learn for himself the consequences of certain actions he chooses as a student, but benefits from those lessons as he continues moving forward. The first important stumble is his enrollment in the MIT summer program: at first he...........

The complete study guide is currently available as a downloadable PDF, RTF, or MS Word DOC file from the PinkMonkey MonkeyNotes download store. The complete study guide contains summaries and notes for all of the chapters; detailed analysis of the themes, plot structure, and characters; author biography, setting, mood, and plot stucture analysis; important quotes - quotations and analysis; detailed analysis of symbolism, motifs, metaphors and imagery; a key facts summary; a multiple choice quiz, and suggested book report ideas and essay topics.


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Clapsaddle, Diane. "TheBestNotes on A Long Way Gone".