Graduate Program

English

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Semester of Degree Completion

Spring 2021

Thesis Director

Bess Winter

Thesis Committee Member

Woody Skinner

Thesis Committee Member

Marjorie Worthington

Thesis Committee Member

Ann Hart

Abstract

Imaginary Things is a coming-of-age memoir about growing apart from one’s family and struggling with identity and independence. This story draws from predecessors in the family dysfunction subgenre of memoir, such as Educated by Tara Westover, The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls, and Running with Scissors by Augusten Burroughs. The narrator tries to find her own identity in the things she loves while navigating familial opposition and rejection. “Imaginary things” such as films, plays, and video games become markers of identity and guide the reader through the story and towards growth, resolution, and sense of self.

Available for download on Thursday, May 11, 2023

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