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Transcript of The Alchemist
Knowing the Characters
Main characters: Santiago, Gypsy, King of Salem, Crystal Merchant, the Englishman, and the Alchemist.
The Heart of the Book- The Plot
The Ending Thoughts
The unnoticeable change of points of view make it hard to comprehend at times but the book had a good plot line. It always kept you on your toes and impatiently waiting to turn the page. You fall in love with the characters and will find that once you have finished the book you feel as if you have lost a friend.
1. Spain had a huge oil spill that caused a lot of people to suffer financially. (Paulo showed how people didn't happen upon wealth easily.)
2. Hubble Telescope goes into space for first time. (I think it opens the door for new adventures, exploring the unknown)
Quick information to get you in mind set of finding a personal legend
Starts off in Spain, goes into Africa, the desert, through an oasis, off into the desert once more, visiting the pyramids, and settling back into Spain.
This book takes place in 1988 which then would be present day due to the book being published in that year.
Relation with the Book and Title
Throughout the book Santiago meets The Alchemist who pushes and leads him to pursue his personal legend. He plays a key role because he is the higher power; he is the one that people look up to for higher knowledge or guidance.
A symbol within the Setting!
The desert was important because it represents the desolation one feels within himself when trying to find out who you are.
A spanish shepherd, he is the on the journey to find his Personal Legend, he is sweet, caring, and always puts people before himself.
A greedy, old woman who is desperate for money so she doesn't have to rely on her children, and is very impatient. She interprets dreams and pushes Santiago to really consider his dream to be more than a longing desire.
King of Salem
A curious, wise, old king who helps us to continue our personal legends, by coming to us in different forms, on the brink of giving in. He confirms and brings realization to Santiago's dream.
A religious man who sells crystal glass ware, that takes in Santiago in his time of need. He is realistic, kind, but also longing for a never fulfilled dream.
An Ancient Alchemist who lives at the oasis and leads Santiago to the end of his journey. He is strong, intelligent, and he is Santiago's back bone to keep pushing him to continue his Personal Legend.
A English man who is attempting to learn the ways of alchemy and find the wise, ancient alchemist. He accompanies Santiago on the caravan and introduces him into Alchemy.
Santiago's family chooses for him to become a priest and stay in Spain. Although, he doesn't want to be confined to one place, he wants to travel. After deliberation he decides to becomes a shepherd.
Making the Decision
Traveling, throughout Spain, he meets many people and goes many amazing places. He even thinks he has fallen in love with a merchants' daughter. (Which is later proven false.) He is very content with his life until one night while sleeping in a church, beside an oak he has a dream of treasure under the sands owned by the Egyptian Pyramids. This is the beginning of his Personal Legend.
Starting the Journey
Santiago visits an old gypsy woman and for her services (interpretation of his dream) he agrees to give her one-tenth of his treasure if he finds it, instead of immediate payment. Not exactly believing her interpretation he continues about his way pondering on taking that big risk.
The Second Opinion
While sitting in a small town, reading a book, after his encounter with the gypsy woman an old man comes to disturb Santiago's reading. Through dialogue Santiago soon finds that this man is a king and is responsible for pushing people to continue with their personal legends. After confirming the dream and giving Santiago two stones, to decipher good from bad omens, Santiago is now convinced to go through with his Legend. For payment Santiago gives the king six of his sheep.
Shortly after selling the remaining sheep in his flock, to afford a trip to Africa, he goes to a bar and intrusts a stranger with his money. The stranger 'takes' Santiago to buy a camel, but Santiago gets lost in the crowd and never sees the man again.
A Ray of Light
Tired, discouraged, and hungry Santiago wonders around finding a shop on the very top of a hill. In the shop Santiago says he will work for dinner and starts polishing crystal. Over dinner they decide Santiago will work for the merchant until he can gather enough to continue his trip. While working in the shop Santiago discovers new ways to make the shop successful. Within a years time, Santiago makes enough to continue his journey.
On the Way
While waiting on the caravan that will take him to Egypt, he meets a Englishman, longing to become an alchemist, that will accompany him. On the trip through the desert the Englishman informs Santiago about the works of alchemy and from there sparks his interest. Until a sudden war broke out in the middle of the desert and they had to bunker down in a near by oasis.
Life at the Oasis
Santiago falls in love with Fatima, the Englishman finds the Alchemist but learns he is not yet prepared to turn metal into gold. Santiago goes through some trials and tribulations. The Alchemist chooses to accompany and lead Santiago to the end of his Personal Legend. He is soon to leave the oasis, leaving the Englishman and his love, Fatima. Teaming with the Alchemist, Santiago heads off into the mysterious desert once more.
While in the desert Santiago and the Alchemist go to the monks, so the Alchemist can show Santiago the Alchemists' personal legend, to transform metal to gold. Once he shows Santiago, the Alchemist gives him gold and sends him on his way. Santiago travels until he has found the Pyramids and then gets brutally attacked and was then told, by an attacker, that he had a dream that his treasure was in Spain under an oak. Santiago went back to Spain and collected his treasure under the oak, where the story first took place.
Paulo puts multiple points of view in the book to show how other people took in the situation and how they contributed to Santiago's personal legend and their thoughts on his journey.
It doesn't say what happens to the Englishman and whether he becomes an Alchemist or not.
It doesn't say whether he ever makes it back to Fatima.
It doesn't say what happened to the Alchemist.
Theme: Never let anyone get in the way of finding your personal legend.
Symbol: I think the Alchemist is Santiago's backbone.
Important Quote: " People need not fear the unknown if they are capable of achieving what they want and need."
- Sometimes Santiago doesn't know what will happen to him and he isn't scared, he puts all his faith into something and he always seems to be okay.