The story “The False Moon” by Shirley Golden comprises several themes: the defective parent-child relationship (accompanied by the motif of alcoholism), teenage rebellion and finding one’s identity.

Defective parent-child relationship

This theme is illustrated in the short story through the characters of Matt and Kay. Many single parents manage to maintain a balance in their families and provide for their children without the help of a partner. This means providing a secure and safe environment in which a child can grow, something which Kay fails to do. Her  vice  is alcoholism, and this is what makes her relationship with Matt defective.


Teenage rebellion

The theme of teenage rebellion is illustrated both by Matt and by the girl artist who becomes his “accomplice” (l. 143). Although we already know what has pushed Matt into becoming a rebel, we know nothing about the girl’s background.


Finding one’s identity

The events depicted in the story contribute to Matt finally deciding to find his own path in life and distance himself from the negative influence of his mother. Several things have contributed to Matt’s journey of finding his true identity: his mother’s alcoholism, his shame of befriending Mark again, his mother’s apathy,...


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