Solar Bones Themes & Motifs

McCormack, Mike
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Inheritance from One's Family

Throughout the novel, McCormack dramatizes how whatever one person inherits from their family inevitably affects their life as an individual. McCormack first explores this generational relationship through the figures of Conway and his father. Conway remembers coming home as a child and seeing his father dissecting the engine of a machine. By watching his father undo the machine’s order, Conway realizes that the world “was a lot less stable and unified” than he had originally thought (20). In part, then, Conway’s desire for order is inherited from his father: like his father, Conway spends his life taking machines apart and putting them back together as engineer. In this way, Conway inherits his love of order and awareness of chaos from his own father.

However, McCormack demonstrates that these intergenerational relationships cannot be the only way an individual defines him or herself. After...

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This section contains 2,104 words
(approx. 6 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Solar Bones Study Guide
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