How could Gandhi represent the journey of the hero?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think that there can be many parallels between the heroic journey or quest and the life of Gandhi.  Much of the specifics will have to come from the specific vision of the hero that is being used.  Yet, some general elements can be integrated into the heroic paradigm.  The idea that the hero comes from humble origins or a background that might belie the potential for heroic qualities is present in Gandhi.  Born of a middle class barrister background, few would have seen him as being the transformative leader that he was.  The "call to action" could be seen in his time in South Africa, where he fully experienced the injustice of racial discrimination or prejudice.  The successes that the hero must experience would be his triumphs in South Africa, moments that called the world's attention, specifically India, that one individual possessed the capacity to challenge the mightiest of empires.  This was on display in India, where the hero did suffer setbacks, but was never deterred from his vision.  In the end, the fact that Gandhi challenged so many forces and so many elements helped to only add to his heroic qualities and further connect how he represented the heroic journey.

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