A Death in the Family

Main Ideas

Themes

Main Ideas Themes

The italicized flashbacks throughout the novel represent memories from Rufus's childhood, each displaying an event that shaped his development. It is hard to say what exactly Agee would have done with these sections had he lived long enough to work them into the body of his novel. Nonetheless, it is clear that childhood, and all that Rufus thought and felt at that time of his life, is vital to the shaping of the novel as a whole.