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Angela's Ashes Analysis

Sums up everything you might want to know anout Angela's Ashes
by

Lauren Walman

on 22 April 2013

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Transcript of Angela's Ashes Analysis

By: Lauren Walman Angela's Ashes Analysis Point of View Primarily throughout the memoir, the diction is colloquial, conversational, unscholar English with Irish dialect for dialogue and distinction purposes. It changes especially in the spelling to illustrate different accents "but his North of Ireland accent......confused the clerk....he simply entered the name Male."(17) as well as cultural differences " Pawty. Thats the way they talk" (360). McCourt writes his points of views and retells stories in grammatically correct English "I stand on top of Barrack Hill and Malachy is at the bottom.(249)", but incorporates his Irish dialect in his conversations " 'Tis the coal dust, Uncle Pa (260)." He successfully uses vivid adjectives and adverbs to make the situation more vivid and less abstract like "thinning"(12), "collapsing" (12),"frilly"(127). Diction He incorporates a lack of proper grammar to give a personal feel to his memoir. McCourt uses three worded sentences and run on sentences with an overuse of conjunctions to add certain emphasis and to incorporate as much information in one sentence as possible for the reader to get a clear understanding of the situation. He purposely uses poor grammar to make the context of the memoir feel as if they were being voiced not written "The master says it’s a glorious thing to die for the Faith and Dad says it’s a glorious thing to die for Ireland and I wonder if there’s anyone in the world who would like us to live (19). It feels as if McCourt thought of this without thought which makes the quote came from McCourts inner thoughts. Having A three-worded sentence shows the significance and seriousness of that sentence like "She says no"(90)," "And he smiles"(96), "She'll kill me (137)". Since he has a tendency to have longer senences, he uses short syntax to stress to the reader the importance of that sentence. In the longer run-on sentences "Then he borrows a boy from another class....or he'll peel.....in her big canas sack."(155), he explains the situation as if the reader is a bystander and McCourt is explaining the nature of the situation. It makes the tone a bit more humorous because as he is describing he adds his opinions "the kitchen isn't a lake anymore" (107) to make the scenario less dreary. Syntax/Grammar/Mechanics I noticed that McCourt frequently uses imagery to give a vivid description, apostrophe to tell his readers that he use to communicate to angels because he truly believed they existed, and humor to lighten the mood and unpurposely uses it to show what he really thought as a child. McCourt chooses specific words to explain an event, and I could tell he deliberately chose his words "twistings and turnings...her moaning for water" (235) so the reader can image in their mind how Frank saw his mother beg for water. In the middle of his memoir he explains that he talked to an angel " I told him that I was waiting for an angel, and he said,Ouch, now Francis..."(107) and he claims that the angel was a man. It was effective because it proved that he had a small amount of faith which could not be described through just abstract words, he needed to have solid anecdotes to prove this. The humor he used was effective because he describes certain situations " Women.....all they do it stay at home, take care of children...the men sit because their worn out from walking"(107) to make his life not as dreary and to see what a child's perspective on that event. It not only effective, but is enhances the point of view of his memior as well. Rhetorical and Literary Devices All three of the books, Angelas Ashes, To Kill a Mockingbird, and Secret Life of Bees, use first person, uses obvious regional dialect, and successful incorporates internal thoughts to have the reader understand the child's perspective on certain scenarios, but all three characters have different motivations on life. Frank wants to search a better life away from the poverty he endured in Ireland, Scout wanted justice for Tom, and Lily wanted to have a mother figure. The points of views of all three books differ because each character grew up in different environments. Frank grew up in poverty, so he was motivated to move to America for a better life. Scout was raised by a lawyer whose occupation was to seek justice, so Scout's motivation was for Tom to have justice, and Lily grew up with no mother and an abusive father, so Lily would be motivated to find a mother. Text-to-Text Themes The point of view is First Person throughout the entire book, however, at the beginning of the book the reader reads the thoughts of the adult McCourt: "When I look back on my childhood I wonder how I survived it all "(1). As it progresses, you read the thoughts of three-year-old McCourt: "Oh,God...My mother will kill me"(19) and as a teenage boy "I want to be a man (261). It is effective because one gets a clear understanding of what McCourt thought throughout the memoir, instead of a partisan, adult's view . Also, one also gets an understanding of how the choices people made, like his mother and father, affect his perception on life and how it determined young McCourt's fate. The Two themes in the memoir are the drinking culture in Ireland and hunger. Drinking is a way to escape the hardships of Irish life and even though Frank's father should never take a drink, he is often encouraged by others to do just that. "Desperate times we live in...Dad lifts his pint and takes a long swallow" (86). Frank is plagued by hunger throughout his childhood. Frank never have enough food to eat. Hunger is mentioned over and over again until it becomes a haunting presence in the narrative. Frank’s mother realizes how hungry her children suffer on a daily basis when her husband sings songs about “suffering Ireland,” she responds, “Ireland can kiss my arse.” Frank then observes, “food on the table is what she wants, not suffering Ireland".
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