A Tree Grows in Brooklyn Social Concerns

This Study Guide consists of approximately 13 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.
This section contains 505 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the A Tree Grows in Brooklyn Short Guide

Although Smith denied an enact of the ir that she wrote a novel of social significance, there are societal themes in A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. The grinding desolation of urban poverty is closest to the surface and it is this, in all its naturalistic detail, that Smith concentrates on.

However, she washes over the images of squalor with sentimentality, as in the figure of the tree: "It grew in boarded up lots and out of neglected rubbish heaps and it was the only tree that grew out of cement. It grew lushly but only in the tenement districts."

Although mean and poor, Smith's Brooklyn teems with life, overflows with the irrepressible good nature of its main characters who refuse to be daunted by the squalor that always threatens to destroy them. Francie Nolan, the protagonist, resists the inadequacy of her life, insists on reading every book in...

(read more)

This section contains 505 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the A Tree Grows in Brooklyn Short Guide
Copyrights
Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction and Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn from Beacham's Encyclopedia of Popular Fiction and Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.