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Alibrandi Essay Questions

'looking For Alibrandi' Essay. Theme: Family

Essay question: Family has a strong influence on our lives. It affects the way we view ourselves and those around us. How has family influenced Josephine and what impact does it have?Family is one of our main influences in our lives, although we are not always aware of it. It shapes the people we are and the choices we make in our lives. In the text 'Looking for Alibrandi' by Melina Marchetta, Josephine Alibrandi is seeking to be free from the world and its misunderstood societal regulations throughout her twelfth year of high school - the year of change and new ways of thinking. Throughout her journey, her family influences her way of thinking. She grows and learns through family and structure, accepting her Italian heritage and family members. Family shows who she is, and by accepting that, Josie is able to live freely to the life she dreamed of, although not in the way she originally expected. Throughout the book, family influences Josephine to reach her goal of emancipation, creating a connected family and a liberated perspective on life.

Throughout the book, Josie's way of thinking changes immensely, from negativity towards her family and culture, to a new understanding and perspective towards life. This is the effect from family, personal experiences, and sharing truths and feelings. Which teaches Josie how she feels about her culture, family and find the part of herself which is embedded in her family. Showing that her family influences and changes the way she feels about life and gives her a new perspective towards it. As the book progresses, Josephine learns to appreciate family - the sacrifices they make her, her Italian heritage and the community of family. Josie became respectful and thankful towards her family as apposed to resentful, because they loved her and her individuality. This has influenced Josie to learn her own truths, make her own rules and way of life, but most importantly, to figure out where her place in life is, 'I know where my place in life is. It's not where the Seras or the Carlys of the world have slotted me… I'm an Australian with Italian blood flowing rapidly through my veins. I'll say that with pride, because it's pride that I feel.' (page 259). Once Josie realises that her family had confided with her and had sacrificed all these things for her and the Alibrandi/Andretti name, she took action, to change her life for herself and her family, to be a better person. 'A lot has changed at home… Maybe because I've changed.' (page 259), this shows that from what her family has taught her, Josephine has changed for the better. Maybe not in the way she expected to, but in the way she can learn to accept herself and her family, which has changed her family life to a more loving, excepting community.

Every family has structure, just like Josephine's family. Josephine's family has a very significant structure, which is generally influenced by their

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Looking For Alibrandi Essay

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Josie is half Italian and half Australian, and often finds herself struggling to belong to either cultural group. She feels like an outsider in the Italian community, yet also at school where most students are Caucasian. Josie’s grandmother Nonna also felt alienated from the Australian community when she first moved to Sydney at 17. She was forced to marry Francesco, who was 15 years her senior. Josie learns that Nonna faced intense loneliness during her early years in Australia, as she was isolated by Australian women for not knowing any English. In learning this, Josie finds a part of her identity in her grandmother.

Josie’s journey of cultural discovery allows her to find peace and pride in her Italian background, and cherish family traditions. She learns to appreciate Nonna’s cultural habits, and acknowledges culture as essential to her identity.

Josie’s lack of belonging at school also stems from the fact that her family isn’t wealthy or upper class, like most families of private school students. She believes that she will never be fully accepted into the school, and Australia as a whole, as she links success with wealth and social status, both of which her family doesn’t have.

In her senior year, however, Josie learns that these social conditions are not as rigid as she once believed. Through her friendships with John and Jacob, she finds a sense of belonging despite their differences in social status and financial background. She learns that it doesn’t matter what her family background was, or how wealthy they were, what truly mattered was how she lives her life as it is and who she chooses to love.

The novel opens with a portrait of Josie as a typical teenager who feels indignant that the world is so unfair to her. The issues that she faces, though dramatic, are presented in a way that make them relatable to all young adults. However, as Josie comes across difficult situations and new relationships, she starts to view the world more positively. She learns that she should complain less about her life, as others may have worse problems, and that all she can do is live her life to her greatest potential. The tragedy of John’s suicide, as well as learning about her own family’s past, makes Josie more empathetic to those around her, as she gradually gets a better grasp on her identity.

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