Choose one static character to discuss in The Glass Castle. How or why does he/she not make a change? How did that character's role affect the plot and/or other characters?

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I was sitting in a taxi, wondering if I had overdressed for the evening, when I looked out the window and saw Mom rooting through a Dumpster. It was just after dark.

This is how Jeannette Walls, author of The Glass Castle, opens the true story of her life. Seeing her mother at the Dumpster takes place many years after Jeannette leaves her dysfunctional family, but it is her mother who motivates Jeannette to escape and pursue a successful life.

I was still rattled from seeing Mom, the unexpectedness of coming across her, the sight of her rooting happily through the Dumpster.

The important point of this quote is the fact that Jeannette’s mother is “happily” picking through the trash. Jeannette feels both guilt and despair, as she has achieved material success, but her mother, as a static character, prefers to spend her life scrounging for necessities:

What could I do? I'd tried to help them countless times, but Dad would insist they didn't need anything, and Mom would ask for something silly, like a perfume atomizer or a membership in a health club. They said that they were living the way they wanted to.

Therein lies the impetus for not only Jeannette’s success, but also the success of her siblings. All four of the Walls children reject their parents’ ways.

Jeannette’s mother is careless. At the age of three, at the stove making her own hotdog for breakfast, Jeannette is burned to the point of needing a stay at the hospital. During her stay, Jeannette’s sister, Lori, is stung by a poisonous scorpion. Jeannette’s mother is perpetually preoccupied and distracted from effectively parenting her children throughout the memoir. As a static character who has made deeply questionable choices, one could argue that she is fortunate to have children who have rejected her way of life.

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