How I Contemplated the World from the Detroit House of Correction and Began My Life Over Again Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 52 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of How I Contemplated the World from the Detroit House of Correction and Began My Life Over Again.
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Love

Love is the engine that drives all of the girl's behavior in "How I Contemplated." She may be misguided, self-destructive, and immature, but the narrator's actions all derive from her desire to be loved. Despite their generosity, the girl's parents seem unable to give her the attention and unguarded affection that she craves. She describes her mother as icy, distant, and artfully constructed and her father as powerful, distracted, and unavailable. As we learn through several references in the story, the narrator's older brother, away at college, engages in the same desperate attention-getting behaviors.

In the narrator's eyes, the mother possesses an other-wordly charm and poise that she feels she can neither live up to nor puncture. Her mother is "a lady . . . self-conscious and unreal." She has "hair like blown-up gold and finer than gold, hair and fingers and body of inestimable grace." She is, above all, too...

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This section contains 933 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the How I Contemplated the World from the Detroit House of Correction and Began My Life Over Again Study Guide
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