Parental Conflict In Turtle Mo Essay

715 words - 3 pages

The Parental Conflict in Turtle Moon For the average person, occasional inter-personal conflicts are a fact of life. Nowhere do these conflicts manifest themselves with greater tension than in the parent-adolescent relationship. Through their works, writers of fiction illuminate the sources of strain common to parent-child interactions. In the novel Turtle Moon, Alice Hoffman exemplifies this conflict in the relationship between Keith Rosen and his mother Lucy. There are several factors that contribute to this conflict and the work as a whole. The strife between Keith and his mother results from Keith's desire to live in New York with his father, the lack of parental involvement, and the lack of communication between Keith and his mother.The discord between Keith and his mother results from his preference to live with his father in New York. Keith has no choice in the decision and now he lives in Verity, a town he hates. This situation lies at the root of his rebellion against his mother. When he lives in New York he is never particularly well behaved, "but after eight months in Florida, he is horrid"(5). Through his rebellious actions Keith generates grief and worry in his mother Lucy. His backpack must be checked "for contraband everyday"(31), and he and his mother fight constantly. Because he is forced to live with his mother, Keith resents her. Keith is angry with Lucy because he feels as if he is trapped in Verity. "He wanted to live with his father, but who asked him?"(6). Keith deliberately disobeys Lucy and has no respect for her. He counts down the days until he can go back to New York and this ignites many arguments between them. Keith's rebellious actions advance the novel's theme of searching for identity and independence.McBane In addition to living in Verity, another source of the conflict between Keith and Lucy is her lack of parental involvement. Lucy and Keith grow more and more distant from each other because Lucy stays out of Keith's life. In the same way Keith avoids his mother at every available opportunity. "He waits in...

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