Angela’s Ashes: A Memoir is an autobiographical work by Frank McCourt that was first published in 1996. McCourt describes his harrowing experiences as a young boy in Limerick, Ireland, in the 1930s and 1940s. At the center of the story is McCourt’s mother, Angela, who despite constant poverty, a criminally irresponsible husband, and the death of three children, is a loving mother who retains her sense of humor. While she must sacrifice her standards of dignity to provide for her children, she never lowers her expectations for her sons as she raises them to be well-behaved, conscientious, kind, and hardworking.

Summary

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Characters

See a complete list of the characters in Angela’s Ashes and in-depth analyses of Frank McCourt, Angela McCourt, and Malachy McCourt (Sr.).

Literary Devices

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Quotes

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Quick Quizzes

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Deeper Study

Enhance your understanding of Angela’s Ashes by reading background about Frank McCourt as well as mini essays about how the book portrays alcoholism, women, and Frank’s relationship with the Catholic Church.

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