Document Type

Thesis

Degree

Master of Fine Arts

Department

Creative Writing

First Advisor's Name

Lynne Barrett

First Advisor's Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Campbell McGrath

Third Advisor's Name

Michael Gillespie

Date of Defense

3-2-2011

Abstract

THE ADVENTURES OF JAMES TULLY is a novel in stories depicting James Tully's experience growing up in the light of his mother's mental illness and the discovery that his family has secrets important to his understanding of himself. After trying to negotiate these difficulties in his working class home town of Clinton, Massachusetts, he embarks on a search for the place where he really belongs. THE ADVENTURES OF JAMES TULLY spans the protagonist’s life from the age of ten through the period following his graduation from college at twenty-one. The book is divided into three sections.

As is typical in the bildungsroman form, the protagonist is a young man who forsakes his home in the search for experience and spiritual enlightenment. Ultimately, James builds a new sense of self as he moves from seeing his world as horrible and frightening to finding in it the promise of beauty.

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