In March, what are some examples when March and Marmee do not tell each other the truth?

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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Throughout the account that March gives of his time in the Civil War, exceprts of his letters that he writes to his wife are included. Yet, from the very beginning, it is clear that there is a massive gap between what he writes and the actual experiences that he shares with the reader. Note how he reveals this in the very first chapter:

Yet I am thankful she is not here, to see what I must see, to know what I am come to know. And with this thought I exculpate my censorship: I never promised I would write the truth.

This is something that is supported throughout the rest of the novel, as so much of March's experience, and of his past, is shown to be something that he does not share with his wife. Yet, at the same time, Marmee is not free from being accused of dishonesty. A key moment when this is revealed is when she gives her side of the story revealing her feelings about when her husband decides to enlist. March had assumed that she was so proud of him she could hardly speak, and that her fingers digging into his arm, scratching him, showed her fierce pride in him. Marmee, however, reveals she was stunned by his vainglorious, stupid gesture, and the scratches she gave him indicated her feelings about his action. What is so fascinating in this novel is the way that March and Marmee are presented as not communicating very well at all: both keep secrets and are not open with each other, offering a very different perspective on the story of Little Women.  

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