Anne with an E
The growth and individuality of L.M. Montgomery’s Anne Shirley in Anne of Green Gables, Anne of Avonlea, and Anne of the Island, depicts an inner struggle from self-delusion to self-awareness that can be recognized within us all.
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The paper discusses how the character, Anne Shirley is more than a character in a book. She has been a friend and kindred spirit to millions of people over several generations. It shows how we relate her adventures to our own lives and filter them through our own experiences. Anne grows from childhood into adolescence, from adolescence to adulthood and beyond and each step of the way the reader is there with her, sharing her decisions, facing her fears and relating it to their own lives. The paper discusses how the growth and individuality of L.M. Montgomery’s Anne Shirley in “Anne of Green Gables,” “Anne of Avonlea,” and “Anne of the Island,” depicts an inner struggle from self-delusion to self-awareness that can be recognized within us all.
“The novels are over, Anne finally realized she loves Gil, and their future seems set, so why do we still need more? What is it about Anne Shirley that has kept a world at her side for close to a century? Epperly captures it best when she states; “we cannot fully explain Anne’s hold over us(46). My mother and grandmother both read Anne’s story before me, loved her spirit, and secretly wished to be her. Three generations of women enraptured by one small girl with the heart of a lion. Why? Anne Shirley continues to live on today because she does not conform to reader expectations, to cultural stereotype, or accepted convention(Epperly 70). I like to believe Anne Shirley lives on today because each of those readers would consider her a friend and kindred spirit and has held and cherished a piece of her in their hearts since they first discovered her. There is something about Anne that brings out the best in people. Her imagination, her joy in every common thing, her virtues and her faults; Anne is an icon for attaining our dreams.
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