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Frank McCourt both idolises and hates his

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Frank McCourt both idolises and hates his father. Discuss this with close reference to the novel Angela's Ashes. Angela's Ashes is a memoir of Frank McCourt's childhood and the difficulties he faced whilst growing up. His family were very poor and moved from America to Limerick to try and live an easier life. Frank's father was constantly out of a job and never had enough money to support his family. Frank and his father have a very interesting relationship. Throughout the book, Frank constantly changes the way he feels for his father. There are times when Frank completely despises him and others where he idolises him. At the beginning of the book, Frank explains that Malachy was "the shiftless loquacious alcoholic father," giving the reader a bad impression of him. As the story moves on, there are several places where you can see that Frank loves his father, despite all the hard times he has put him and his family through. Malachy is constantly out of a job, leaving his family to survive on their own through poverty. He uses every single penny they have at the pubs; it drives Frank mad and he loses all respect for him. Frank completely loathes his father when he upsets his mother. He makes her angry which Frank cannot stand. "My heart is banging away in my chest and I don't know what to do because I know I'm raging inside like my mother". ...read more.


When Malachy moved to England, Frank was upset when he left but they became very distant after a couple of years. Frank probably knew he wouldn't see him again but he didn't care because he hadn't sent his mother a penny. Although Frank hated his father for many things, he still loved him. Malachy would get up in the morning with Frank and tell him stories about Cuchulain, "that's my story. Dad can't tell that story to Malachy or any other children down the hall," and then they would sit drinking tea and eating bread. "He finishes the story and lets me sip his tea. It's bitter, but I'm happy there on his lap." Frank loved his mornings with his father as it was just the two of them and he had him all to himself. "When you have your father to yourself by the fire in the morning you don't need Cuchulain or the Angel on the Seventh Step or anything." When Frank thought about having a different father, he would think about their morning together and would decide he was happy with him as his father. "He lights the fire and makes the tea and sings to himself or reads the paper to me in a whisper." Frank loved him the most when he brought home the wages from his job and made his mother, Angela, happy. ...read more.


"He looks at me, steps away, stops, comes back, kisses me on the forehead for the first time in my life and I'm so happy I feel like floating out of the bed." This is the first time Malachy actually embraces Frank and he feels wonderful. When Angela was angry at Frank or acted in a strange way, he would always wonder where his father was, "She's not talking like my mother today. I want my father. Where is my father?" Frank had a love-hate relationship with his father. However, the only time he despised and hated him was when he was under the influence of the drink. Malachy would use the money for his addiction but nothing else. If Malachy did not have a drinking problem, he would probably do anything for his children. When he wasn't drunk, Malachy had so much love and care for his children and would give them anything. The books leaves the reader with a warm, affection their love for one another is and this impression leaves you to overlook the previous feelings you had for Malachy as an incompetent father. Frank loved him so much and cherished the moments he spent with him. He looked up to him with much admiration. Frank loved spending time with him and idolised him. Frank only hated his father for keeping his mother and brothers in crippling hunger but loved him when he was sober, and trying to look after the family. Word Count: 1499 1 ...read more.

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