Wishtree Themes & Motifs

Applegate, Katherine
This Study Guide consists of approximately 50 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Wishtree.
This section contains 2,527 words
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Intolerance Versus Diversity

One of Wishtree’s most important themes is its demonstration of the way that intolerance and racism tear communities apart. Red’s story about Maeve and the nineteenth-century neighborhood demonstrates that in the past, intolerance had been aimed at each new wave of immigrants, including Irish and Italian groups. Applegate shows how these European cultures were absorbed into the neighborhood’s culture to mimic the way they were absorbed into American life as a whole. Maeve draws on her Irish heritage to start the wishtree tradition, and this symbol of hope and perseverance becomes the foundation of the diverse neighborhood for decades. When the lanky boy carves “LEAVE” into Red’s trunk, he attacks the heart of the community’s diverse identity. His actions jeopardize Red’s survival and the survival of all tolerance and unity in the neighborhood. Wishtree truly belongs to a...

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This section contains 2,527 words
(approx. 7 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Wishtree Study Guide
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