Theme Of Maturity In The Glass Castle

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The character of Jeannette in The Glass Castle shows the theme of adulthood, growing up, and coming of age in many ways. Jeanette deals with very adult issues at a very young age, and the chaos of her childhood forces her to mature fast, which shows the theme of growing up, and her success supports the thematic topic of “putting your past behind you”. What first shows the theme of maturity is the contrast between Jeanette's eventual success, and her parents way of life. When Jeanette meets her mother, Rose Mary Walls, in the streets of New York, we see how far Jeanette has come compared to her mother. She moved to New York at 17, became a successful journalist, and this moment at the start of the book represents a lot of emotion. Seeing her mother again, and what she’s done with her life after years of separation shocks her, shown with “When she looked up, I was overcome with panic that she’d see me and call out my name... And mom would introduce herself, and my secret would be out.” [Walls, 3]. She grew up, escaped, and put her poor childhood behind her.…show more content…
Jeanette was raised by devil-may-care parents who believed she could manage on her own enough to be cooking for herself each night at the age of three, which eventually leads to her getting seriously burned. Events such as these, careless and reckless parenting as it may have been, made Jeanette “grow up” ten times faster than the normal girl her age, albeit for all the wrong reasons. For example, “It was easy… It wasn’t like there was some complicated recipe that you had to be old enough to follow. … Mom says I’m mature for my age, and she lets me cook a lot.” [Walls, 10-11],
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