Crime in the Neighbourhodd - Suzanne Berne / Dilemna of whether Marsha still loves her father

Essay by ernmHigh School, 12th grade February 2004

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'Crime in the Neighborhood' by Suzanne Berne is set in a suburban Washington community in the seventies. The story revolves around Marsha , a young girl who makes up sick stories about her neighbour Mr Green seemingly to vent anger out against he father leaving her. Through-out the novel Marsha suffers from the dilemma of whether she still loves her father.

At the beginning of the story Marsha worships her father.

'He was a mostly mild man with a weakness for passion, a suburban father burdened with the heart of a Russian hero...'

She clearly believe that her father is different from other fathers , better than other fathers. I feel that she is implying that to other people her father looks ordinary but to her he is different. To her he is a hero with so much love that it is a weakness. She is also implying that it was not her fathers fault for the affair as he was so overloaded with love.

This shows she feels her father is so perfect that he can do no wrong. She emphasises this point of view by using alliteration in the phrase 'mostly mild man.' Marsha certainly loves her father at the beginning of this story and so much so that she feels he cannot do any wrong.

But her father soon leaves the family making Marsha heart-broken.

'Then my father left , and a few months after that Boyd Ellison was killed behind the Spring Hill Mall , and what happened in other neighborhoods.'

I believe that Marsha see's these events are connected. Since her father's departure hurt her so much it must (in her opinion) have hurt everyone else as much. Boyd Ellison's death left a hole in the community. Her fathers death left a hole in her...