How has addiction affected the people in Angela's Ashes?

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Addiction is a major theme throughout Angela's Ashes , and is more ambiguous than it may first appear. The most obvious example of addiction in the novel is Malachy's alcoholism, which condemns him, and his family, to grinding poverty. Malachy's addiction renders him unable to work, and so his family is perpetually "on the dole." They live on the brink of starvation in a hut-like home which is always flooding, and which is next to an outdoor lavatory. Malachy's addiction even leads to the death of some of his children via poverty. This is devastatingly symbolized by his placing of a glass of beer on an...

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