Coming of Age in the Book 'The Life of Pi' by Yann Martel

Yann Martel the author of the book “The white tiger” introduces us to a different world where everything we think is unbelievable happens. This is a story about religion, animals, survival and most importantly maturity. From a boy who didn’t know how to treat the animals to a man who is living with a tiger. Even if Pi believes in many gods, and the goal through this journey is to survive in every possible way, Pi succeeds because he never stopped believing in himself, the fear which overwhelmed him from the beginning of his journey, he used that and converted into a weapon. That weapon will help him to survive many situations and think in advance. One storm changes his life forever, the only survived where the animals and him. He lost his family but never stops believing that one day he will find the way to his home.

“Coming of age” frequently means a progression from childhood to adulthood and usually takes place during adolescence. It can refer to sexual maturity, the age of self-awareness and responsibility or it is marked by some ritual or life event. Pi coming of age is not a typical process from a child to becoming an adult. Pi begins this process when he chooses a new nickname, but has a long and agonising journey from there. His name in his childhood was a target of humiliation but that stopped the day when he stands up and tells everyone that his name isn’t any more “Piscine” from that moment he becomes” Pi”, that’s the moment when he stands by his dignity, moment where he defended himself. ”My name is Piscine Molitor Patel know to all as Pi=3.14”

The turning point in this novel starts when Pi and his family decide to move on with their lives in Canada their boat “Tsimtsum” sinks, Pi initially places all his hope in being rescued by a marine search.”I had to stop hoping so much that a ship would rescue me.” The journey of Pi begins on the lifeboat, Pi discovered that he is sharing the 26-foot vessel with female orangutang, hyena injured zebra and three years old Bengal tiger named Richard Parker.”I was alone and orphaned, in the middle of the Pacific, hanging on to an oar, an adult tiger in front of me, sharks beneath me, a storm raging above me.” He is shocked and traumatised everything he thinks of at that moment is to survive and hope that his family is well. However, Pi soon realises he'll have to fend for himself. Putting aside his grief and fear, he takes inventory of his supplies. He also takes control of that situation in his hands, declaring: “I will not die. I will refuse it. I will make it through this nightmare... I have survived so far, miraculously. Now I will turn miracle into routine.” He begins by building a raft in order to create a space away from Richard Parker and takes other measures to become self-sufficient.

Whole the time Pi is aware of the situations and that every moment the situation can change, even he is aware that he can be eaten and die every moment. But he decides to live with a tiger, both Richard and Parker starts to depend on one another. At that moment the only family to Pi was Richard Parker. But first Pi wanted to become an “alpha figure”, or the dominant figure in the relationship in order to survive. They start to gain each other’s respect and share their minuscule living quarters.”Without Richard Parker, I wouldn’t be alive today to tell you my story.” His concentrated effort on training, feeding, providing for, avoiding, and working with Richard Parker is the main reason Pi remains vigilant and focused, which is what eventually saves his life. “Richard Parker was tougher than I was in the face of these fish and far more efficient.” The moment when he becomes sure that he is “alpha figure” he pronounces Richard Parker for his partner in an imaginary circus performance.

“The life of Pi” is a journey which is showing that everything that seems unbelievable is possible. Our fear can be converted into our most powerful weapon, something that will keep us alive, and a wild animal a tiger can be our only family and friend. Yes in this story everything is possible, the interesting part is that whole the time while was reading as much as I was caring for Pi I was caring also for Richard Parker as I was part of their journey. “Yes. The story with animals is the better story.” You can become an adult even if you are just a child if our life depends on adultness we will become everything we must be to save our lives the same as Pi did. He becomes an adult the moment when the boat sinks, 227 days spent with wild animals, it is not simple but at that moment you understand that not just people can become your family wild animal Richard Parker can be part of you and your family too.

07 April 2022
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