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What is the most significant passage in Little Women by Louisa May Alcott?

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cassandralivi... | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 1) Honors

Posted May 19, 2012 at 9:32 PM via web

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What is the most significant passage in Little Women by Louisa May Alcott?

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literaturenerd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted May 19, 2012 at 9:49 PM (Answer #1)

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Many people may have different suggestions as to what is the most important passage in Louisa May Alcott's novel Little Women. While many passages have significance, the conclusion of the novel speaks to the heart of the novel.

Oh, my girls, however long you may live, I never can wish you a greater happiness than this!

Marmee March, the mother of the four "little women," offers her children both guidance and support at every turn. These concluding lines of the novel show speak to the importance of identity (a main theme in the novel).

As Marmee listens to her children reflect on their lives, and what they have learned, she is elated by the fact that her children have found happiness and their identities. Marmee could not be happier as she listens to her children reveal what they have learned in life--the truth behind happiness. For Marmee, nothing else maters than her children's happiness. She wants them to revel in their own happiness in the same way that she is. By wishing no greater happiness for her children, Marmee is announcing her own ecstatic feelings.

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