Welcome to the LitCharts study guide on Frank McCourt's Angela’s Ashes. Created by the original team behind SparkNotes, LitCharts are the world's best literature guides.
- Full Title: Angela’s Ashes: A Memoir
- Where Written: New York City, USA
- When Published: September 5, 1996
- Literary Period: “Miserabilism,” the immigrant memoir
- Genre: Memoir, coming-of-age story
- Setting: Brooklyn, New York / Limerick, Ireland
- Climax: Frank’s decision to walk out of the post office exam
- Antagonist: Lamar Griffin, poverty, alcoholism
- Point of View: First person
From dropout to honorary professor: Frank McCourt’s academic career was a strange thing. As a 13-year-old, he was forced to drop out of school to support his family, meaning that he couldn’t pursue the secondary education that most Americans take for granted. Years later, however, McCourt had more degrees than he could count. On the strength of Angela’s Ashes, he was granted honorary degrees from the University of Western Ontario, New York University, and at least a dozen other schools.
A Limerick Hero: After Frank McCourt’s death in 2009, his brother Malachy arranged for the building of a Frank McCourt Museum in Limerick, Ireland. The Museum, which officially opened in 2011, contains McCourt’s papers, some of his old schoolbooks and photographs, and a recreation of the McCourt home as it stood in the 1940s. Not a bad way to remember your brother.