Everything Inside Themes & Motifs

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Family

The story collection repeatedly recognizes the inherent meaning and value of familial relationships, and through this recognition, the stories demonstrate the fundamental necessity of functional family dynamics. For example, in “Sunrise, Sunset,” the main narrative tension in between Jeanne and Carole. Jeanne has just given birth for the first time, and she is now afraid of the responsibilities of motherhood. Meanwhile, Carole views family as the central purpose of life: “She couldn't imagine life without her children. She would have felt even more lost and purposeless without them” (143). The climax of the story arrives when Jeanne is awakened to her love for her newborn son. The story presents this realization as a triumph, while Carole’s progressing dementia is a tragedy since it will interfere with her family relationships. Thus, family remains the focus of the story as the narrative presents its inherent value.

“In the...

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This section contains 2,202 words
(approx. 6 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Everything Inside Study Guide
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