Annie John Essay

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In this excerpt, Nagel asserts that Annie John is a classic bildungsroman (coming-of-age novel) in which the heroine experiences familial bliss, then ambivalent turmoil about her mother, and finally a permanent departure from home at seventeen.

On the surface, everything about Annie John suggests the traditional Bildungsroman: it traces the central episodes in the life of a young girl from prepubescent familial bliss to her ambivalent turmoil about her mother and a permanent departure from home at seventeen. Along the way she struggles through alternate moods of embracing and rejecting her parents, the satisfying and troubling subterfuge of social expectations, the awakening of an uneasy sexuality, and the gradual formulation of an internal life that seeks release from the strictures of home and the culture of Antigua....

It is an exciting but painful journey. Essentially, it proves a tragic "coming of age in Antigua," despite the overlay of...

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This section contains 2,830 words
(approx. 8 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Annie John Study Guide
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Annie John from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.