LOOKING FOR ALIBRANDI: by Melina Marchetta: Josephine is a realistic heroine because she has as many flaws as virtues. Discuss.

Essay by Shamus March 2005

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Josephine Alibrandi is one of the main characters in award winning novel Looking for Alibrandi by Melina Marchetta. A teenage girl, preparing to complete her HSC at St. Martha's, is confronted by her father, who she has never seen before, and had moved to Adelaide upon learning that Christina, Josie's mother, was pregnant. The arrival of her father, at her grandmother's home in Sydney, changes a lot of things in her family, but not all for the bad.

Josie and her mother Christina, have a strong, trustworthy relationship. They are capable of sharing their emotions with each other well. The relationship between Josie and her grandmother, Katia Alibrandi, is a different story. Katia is always watching Josie, and informing her mother of any unacceptable actions taken out by her. This creates arguments between Katia and her granddaughter. But all of this soon changes, as Josie begins to learn about the past of her grandmother and mother.

Her friendship with her mother is not always perfect. Sometimes, such as the time that Christina was going out with Paul Presito, they get into arguments. This is a flaw with Josie, but it also could mean that her mother and herself have a lot in common, so this could be referred to as a virtue. At the end of the novel, Josie has many positive aspects, to do with her grandmother and herself. Initially, Josie and Michael Andretti have a poor relationship, but as time progresses, it improves.

Josephine's friends have an influence on a lot of things that Josie does. Decisions about what happens at school, and at times after school are influenced by her fellow St. Martha students. Her friends also influence what she does with Jacob Coote. Josie is influenced by her friends about what influences she makes. A...