The Cellist of Sarajevo Questions and Answers
by Steven Galloway

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In Galloway's The Cellist of Sarajevo, what does Kenan learn about himself? 

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In Galloway's The Cellist of Sarajevo, Kenan learns a great deal about himself—as does the reader—as he makes his trip some distance away to the brewery to fill bottles (his family's and his neighbor's) with fresh water.

On this weekly journey, Kenan has a lot of time to reflect upon his life and how it has so drastically changed with the war. The loss of the things of the past (such as running water and electric) hit him and his family hard. He has learned to appreciate things they once had, and any reprieve is a source of great joy for him and his family. For example, when the electric comes on temporarily, he notes that for a short while, the family will not be able to contain their pleasure:

The bulb in the ceiling surges to life…faces will be tired from smiling.

The life he and his family now live is, he comes to realize, barely living at all. As he walks along to get the water, shelling begins there at the brewery. He realizes that he is a coward, for he is frozen in place while...

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