A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

1051 Words5 Pages
A Lesson Learned: Both Now and Then American literature can be defined in many ways, one of which is most clearly displayed in books such as A Tree Grows In Brooklyn. Furthermore, it is easy to distinguish the difference between classic and contemporary novels. Comparing stories such as A Civil Action, Their Eyes Were Watching God, Falling Man, and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn clearly identify this difference. The authors made an impact on the society around them, teaching readers to learn from the characters in the book. The themes expressed can be both modern and classic; however, they can be applied to any generation’s life. American literature can be clearly defined by very specific indicators, indicators most prominently shown in A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. The Nolan family stress education to their children. They know that’s how they will get further in life and make it a priority in their children’s lives. Mary Rommley, grandmother of Francie, gives her mother, Katie, the advice to raise her children so they will have more opportunities. Mary’s optimism about this foreshadows Francie’s ability to get an education. Mary has faith in this dream because of Johnny and Katie’s ability to read a write. The successful characters in this book are the ones that have the vision of the American dream in their heads. The characters such as Johnny and Uncle Flittman, who do not survive, do not have this vision and just wander through their lives. The American dream is visible in almost every aspect of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn and truly defines American literature. Classic novels have certain themes that are illustrated that set them apart from other modern novels. For example, in A Tree Grows in Brooklyn the hardship of the economy plays a huge role in the plot of this book. The characters are faced with hardships that are not very popular in more recent novels. For

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