The Glass Castle By Jeannette Walls Sparknotes

1916 Words8 Pages

Throughout the memoir the Glass Castle, by Jeannette Walls, the struggles and trials the family endures are akin to the struggle of the Joshua tree that RoseMary admires in the Desert. They swim in places like the Desert and New York, where there is a balance of adventure and anchoring, and sink in places like Welch, where the balance between adventure and anchoring is weak to nonexistent. If there is a means of support and a solid rule system, the tree grows straight, and the family swims, with a normal life. But when they are left to the elements, or, in the family’s case, their own devices, the family sinks, and the tree grows gnarled and twisted, especially in Welch.
Throughout their travels as a family, there are three important locations …show more content…

However, from the more holistic perspective one gains by reading and reflecting on the story, it is plain to see that the family is sinking and gnarling under the clear, happy façade Jeanette grows up in because of the parents’ debt problems and RoseMary’s and Rex’s issues with finding jobs. Similar to the way the parents assume their children’s behaviour to run away from the non-spontaneous or adventure-like realities of life when they don’t feel like dealing with their responsibilities, they use games and happy façades to literally escape from situations they don’t want to deal with. “We were always doing the skedaddle, usually in the middle of the night” -Jeanette, when she first explains the process of the skedaddle to the reader. (19) As small children, Jeannette, Lori, and Brian’s lives were permeated by “the skedaddle” aka swimming away from their debts and problems before they could notice that they were sinking. The parents chose to ignore serious financial matters/ responsibilities like their debts and taxes and run away. Acting like their …show more content…

They use their parental authority only when they want to; when it will act as an escape plan, and act more childish than their actual children. Yet, they keep choosing to live this way. Unlike the children, who see the problem with their situation, the parents never cease to try to find adventure, like how they see the Joshua tree’s struggle as beautiful, and similarly saw their own trials as nothing to be ashamed of; something that made them strong, and admirable. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but they failed to realize that the rest of their family didn’t see eye to eye with them. “I loved the desert” Because of the way that Jeanette grew up with her family, she looked at her experience in a positive light. (21) Although when they were skedaddling, they were swimming away, life in the desert was like floating in a gentle current, rather than having to swim in a specific direction. If chaos

Open Document