“The Glass Castle”

Free «The Glass Castle» Essay Sample

In her memoir, the Glass Castle, Jeannette Walls explicitly narrates the unique childhood she endured. In this captivating artwork, Walls shares her fond memories about the family. The conservative parents and the occasional movements the family made. Walls parents never conformed to the societal norms and social responsibility. Together with her siblings, Jeannette Walls had to fend for herself even for the basic needs: food and shelter. However, in a brave way, Jeannette Walls brings out the life story devoid of self-pity or any form of anger. In an innocent way yet shocking enough also, Jeannette describes the events that definitely shaped up her life into a successful person in New York. Therefore, the Glass Castle is a double-edged memoir by a journalist that not only stuns readers by the tragic circumstances of Jeannette’s childhood, but also leaves readers awed by the strength and uniqueness of the author.

The Glass Castle memoir triggers a thoughtful moment for the readers, thus, leading to different life lessons. Therefore, it is possible to draw a number of themes from the piece of work by Jeannette Walls. Firstly, forgiveness stands out to be perhaps the most significant theme of the memoir. Jeannette’s parents were irresponsible and never gave their children the peace of mind they needed to grow and develop in the society. In several occasions, Walls parents made poor choices that had a lot of impact on their children. Together with her siblings, Jeannette had to endure life with no food in their stomachs. They never had a permanent, decent, formal shelter or home. According to Jeannette, sometimes they had to live in a house with leaking roof enduring cold without heat to warm. Rex and Rose did not provide proper clothing for their children too. Sometimes these parents even took the children’s money and spent on their own needs. Fortunately, despite all the challenges and humiliation that Jeannette, her brother and sisters endured, these kids always had a kind heart ready to take back their parents and accept them. This is sheer forgiveness.

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There are different factors that might have influenced the author to attend college. Firstly, Rex was an intelligent, brave, and skilled person if not for his alcoholism. Jeannette must have drawn motivation from her father right from childhood. The life that Wall’s family had was not pleasing too. Therefore, the hope for betterment of situation could have propelled Jeannette.

The Glass Castle shades light on Appalachian culture as a mining culture. However, despite this prosperous industry, the people of Appalachian do not seem successful economically. Despite Rex occasionally landing a job in the mines, he does not settle financially. The polluted rivers, as described by Rex, also offers a hint into poor sanitation amongst the small communities in Appalachian.

While other parents would want to be consistent with the societal norms, especially in the eyes of their children, Rex and Rose were in a high peddle stone with a towering uniqueness. The high intelligence of Rex played a role in his behavior. With high self-esteem, Rex portrays a person who can do anything. He dreamt of building a glass home for his family. His skills made him believe that he had answers to every problem his family encountered. However, this had negative impacts because he never realized how much he affected his children. Trust is another significant factor that must have contributed to the tightness of the two antagonistic parents in the memoir. The fact that Rose was contented and could tolerate Rex in her life proves that she trusted her husband and his actions.

The story of Jeannette has many teachings about the family, as a social structure. Within a family, there are different people with different characters. It is the acceptance of the uniqueness of all family members, which plays a significant role in keeping the family together. Jeannette and her siblings constantly welcomed their strange parents into their lives to keep the family bonded. However, it is important to give a member of the family some space to explore the world.

Finally, The Glass Castle presents cultural conflict among different people. This brings out the concept of cultural pluralism to have some key factors. However much Wall’s parents wanted to remain conservative with their culture of not paying debts, the law of their land compelled them to be consistent with payments. Therefore, it is impossible to keep running away from glaring demands when two cultures integrate.

In conclusion, The Glass Castle memoir offers multifaceted lessons of life. As Jeannette recaps on the past and give a glimpse of the present’s better time in New York, sheer lessons of forgiveness, keeping dreams among other lessons, explicitly pass on to readers.


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