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Little Women, written by Louisa May Alcott, is a novel based on a family of four girls, Margaret “Meg” March, Josephine “Jo” March, Beth March, and Amy March, and of their family values. Little Women demonstrates strong events based on several family values. The story of the March family is set in New England during the civil war. Throughout this point in time the little women are to survive with out a father figure, as their father has gone to fight in the war. Over long periods of time, the four March sisters had to face the fact that they were very poor and could not receive every thing that they wished for. As the March family stayed home awaiting the return of their father, they were very lucky to receive the “fatherly” support from an old, wealthy neighbour, Mr Laurence. Overtime the girls formed a tight bond with Mr Laurence and his grandson Laurie. As the March family continues through the hard times in life, they are blessed by the friendship of family and friends.
In the Novel the four sisters show that they are very unselfish and are capable of sharing what little things they have with others. Even though the girls realise (Amy especially) that they are suffering poverty and are not able to receive everything that they wish, they are very grateful for what they have. The March sisters tend not to make a fuss mainly because whilst their father is away life gets tough with only a mother figure around. “Not far away from here lies a poor old woman with a little new born baby.
Six children are huddled into one bed to keep from freezing, for they have no fire. There is nothing to eat over there; and the oldest boy came to tell me they were suffering hunger and cold. My girls, will you give them your breakfast as a Christmas present?’ pg 20 In the chapter A merry Christmas this here is a great example of how generous the March family is even though the have so little themselves. The girls were very disappointed to give their food away but knew that there was a family suffering severely without any food, so they decided to the right thing.
In Little women the four March sisters show loyalty by looking out for each other. Through the hardest times in life the girls manage to stick by each other and along the way on their journey they learn from their mistakes. Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy are not your everyday type of sisters who may fight a lot with one another. The girls infrequently have fights because they are so alike, they are so kind to one another and share anything they have for that is all that they do have.
“I let the sun go down on my anger; I wouldn’t forgive her, and today, if it hadn’t been for Laurie it might have been too late! How could I be so wicked?’ said Jo half aloud, as she leaned over her sister, softly stroking the wet hair scattered on the pillow. As if she heard, Amy opened her eyes, and held out her arms, with a smile that went straight to Jo’s heart.’ Page 115. Even though the girls make mistakes they learn from them and are persistent never to make that same mistake again. Through out the novel looking out for each other is a true family value and by doing this the girls manage through life a lot easier.
Life becomes more interesting when family and friends are together. It’s not until later on in life when the March girls realise that their next door neighbours are not close and that they ought to become neighbourly with one another. It is here in the novel where all the sisters begin to loosen up and enjoy the new company of the ‘Laurence boy’. At first the girls are a bit timid because they are embarrassed by the fact that they are so much poorer to Laurie, but after first impressions the girls really begin to bond with Laurie and they form a tight friendship. ‘We are not strangers, we are neighbours, and you needn’t think you’d be a bother. We want to know you, and I’ve been trying to do this ever so long.’ Page 70.Through the novel it is important to be able to have the love and support of friends and family so that it makes life easier through the difficult and depressing patches.
In conclusion Marmee only wants best for her girls, but in her eyes this does not mean the wealthiest man that the girls can get their hands on this means, happiness and security from the one they tend to spend their rest of their lives with. “Money is a needful and precious thing,-and, when well used, a noble thing,-but I never want you to think it is the first or only prize to strive for. I’d rather see you poor men’s wives, if you were happy, beloved, contented, than queens on thrones, without self- respect and peace.” If along the way the girls did not have one another and there values then Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy would struggle more then what they already do. Through out the novel family values are very important and are expressed in many ways, not only through family but close friends too. The March sisters go through life with the love and support of each other and share an amazing journey.