Angelas Ashes Summary

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Angela’s Ashes

9-4-12
5 hour

1. “You might be poor, your shoes might be broken, but your mind is a palace” (208).
This quote was chosen because it had the most significance to the memoir out of all. The quote means even though you are poor and that you don’t have all the nicest things in life, you can make anything you want and have the greatest things in your mind with imagination. Life doesn’t have to be hard if you think positively about yourself. You can make anything of yourself and become anything you want to be. This quote had great significance to the novel because the McCourts were very poor and struggled in life, but Frank overcame it by thinking with his mind and overcoming challenges that he faced during his struggle.

2. “It’s lovely to know the world can’t interfere with the inside of your head” (202).
This quote was chosen because Frank McCourt lived by it. Towards the end of the novel Frank McCourt wanted to quit school and just work like his father. Frank also wanted to go to America and start a new life of his own. Frank didn’t care what others thought about how he ran his life after he got a job, so he worked up to his goal, and became a successful young man. Frank didn’t allow others to take advantage of him and he stuck to his goal, and later succeeded. This quote shaped Frank McCourt as the main character and showed the readers of his book what he was like as a child.

3. “It’s hard to sleep when you know the next day you’re fourteen and starting your first job as a man” (309). I selected this quote because it was a positive turn of events in the memoir for the McCourts. It was also a dream come true for young Frank, taking a step into his adulthood. This was the time Frank took on the father role of his family, when the actual father was in London. It was the first stage in Frank’s life dream, of returning to America. It has much significance to the novel because when the family was on its last leg because of no money coming from London, young Frank put them back on their feet by bringing in food and money. Overall Frank kept the family surviving and also kept them together.

4. “I stagger to a chair and she says, Just like your father. I try to control the way my tongue moves in my mouth. I’d rather be, I’d rather, rather be like my father then Laman Griffin. She turns away from me and looks into the ashes in the range but I won’t leave her alone because I had my pint, two pints, and I’m sixteen tomorrow, a man” (340).

I chose this quote out of the book because I saw Frank becoming a reflection of his unsupportive father. Frank at this point thinks he’s an adult when he’s really not and starts to drink like his father. Angela his mother knows by experience that this is bad news because all they do is drink the money away. Angela and Frank get into an argument where in the end Frank hits his mother which changes their relationship for the rest of the book. In a way this event helped Frank achieve his goal of going to America because he moved out and didn’t have to give money for the rest of the family. This shows the maturing of Frank becoming an adult in the memoir.

5. “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. My brothers are dead and my sister is dead and I wonder if they died for Ireland or the Faith. Dad says they were too young to die for anything. Mam says it was disease and starvation and him never having a job. Dad says, Och, Angela, puts on his cap and goes for a long walk” (113).

This quote gave explanation to Frank, in which he started to understand his parent’s conflictions. Frank began to understand that his mother blamed the death of her younger children on their father for drinking the money for food away. In the fathers defense he just goes for long...
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