Aim (Dallas and Riley)
MacDonald portrays his experiences growing up in South Boston through his novel All Souls. He elaborates that in 1974 the harsh environment led to tragedies and devastation in his family. He portrays this experience to the audience to express redemption and hope by using pathos. Easter Rising: An Irish American Coming Up from Under, “When his friends branch into drugs and alcohol, MacDonald remains sober, seeking refuge and a renewed sense of self in Boston’s burgeoning early 80’s puck rock scene” (Publishers Weekly). He focuses on having a harsh life especially during this time period when society was changing dramatically to create redemption and renewal. He further conducts hav
ing the Lost Generation being portrayed in this novel to elaborate on drugs and poverty in Boston that made him an activist.
Works Cited:
"Easter Rising: An Irish American Coming Up from Under" Publishers Weekly. Vol. 253 Issue 27 pg. 68-69. Literary Reference Center. 10 July 2006. Web. 7 January 2013.

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Audience (Nicolette)
external image 1023_radio-boston-southie-620x380.jpgMichael Patrick MacDonald was born on March 9th in 1966. This particular point in time was marked by the Vietnam war, race protests and in Boston, urban regeneration. This so called "urban regeneration" (Boston Discovery Guide) is directly related to a different man; James J Bulger. From 1963-1965 Bulger was in prison in the Lewisburg Federal Penitentiary meaning in 1966 James "Whitey" Bulger had a whole year to return to Boston and form ties with one of the most powerful men in Boston at the time; Donald Killeen head of the Irish Mob at that time. Despite the complex web of people involved and how the hierarchy of the mob came about the main point is at the time MacDonald was growing up Whitey Bulger was growing to be a much larger presence in Boston. This is how "All Souls" came about, Whitey Bulger and his so called "urban regeneration" (actually the rise of the mob and introduction of many more drugs on Boston's streets) took the lives of many teenagers in efforts of recruiting. This is the cause of the events portrayed within "All Souls" the tragedy MacDonald depicts is in direct relation to the crime occurring at that time. From this he reaches his audience due to his raw retelling of growing up in the shadow of "Boston's most notorious mob boss" (Melley). Through the loss of his brothers, his sister entering a coma, and the observance of so many others within Southie lose loved ones MacDonald tears at the heart strings of his audience. Those readers can connect so deeply with "All Souls" because of the simple fact that it is a memoir. The knowledge that the author actually went through all of the tragedy within the novel connects to any reader who has lost a loved one and essentially any reader with emotion. " MacDonald [makes readers] both chuckle and shed tears by relating all the painful details and misfortunes, while making them bearable with dashes of humor. In addition, [readers can] relate to the characters so much that [they feel] as though they [are] family" (Dooley). If the idea of death and race wars or the 60's and 70's in general dissuade any readers the deep personal connections within the book are capable of changing minds. It is upon this basis MacDonald created a broad audience but pinpoints it further through mob interest and the intrigue of a life of crime and more importantly a life observing the effects of crime.
Work Cited
"Boston History Timeline". Boston Discovery Guide. 8 January 2013. Web.
Dooley, Sequoia. "All Souls; A Family Story from Southie". Teen Ink. 2010, 21, 8. EBSCOhost. 8 January 2013. Web.
Melley, Brian. "FBI arrests mob boss Whitey Bulger in Calif.". US News Online. 2011. EBSCOhost. 8 January 2013. Web.






Cultural by: Ashley Summerset

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South Boston has not changed physically over the years from the time period of the book in the 1970s up to modern day. Lorrayne Ward wrote for the Harvard Crimson paper at Harvard University on the change of South Boston illustrating, “The corner stores, bars on Broaway and Catholic school he [MacDonald] mentions still occupy the same spots, do the same business” (2). Although the physical aspect of Southie has not changed the days of “anit-bussing riots and hate crimes” (Ward 2) are no more. Back in the 1970s, the time of MacDonald’s book, racism and segregation were everywhere and South Boston was not a safe place to live. In a Hoover Institution of Stanford University online publication, it lays out the issue that really stirred Southie writing, “The Master Plan generally required students from designated white neighborhoods to be bused to schools in designated black neighborhoods and vice versa” (7). Riots broke out and people boycotted sending their kids to school. For more then ten years this was the way Soutie was; boycott after boycott. Irish families pulled their kids out of public school and put them into private school. The culture of the 1970s was riots and boycotts, drugs and violence, and poverty. Lorrayne writes, “Many kids and teens in Southie see all roads out as dead ends or circular paths eventually leading them right back to where they started” (4). That was the culture back then and it is still that way now.

"Busing's Boston Massacre." Hoover Institution. Stanford University, 1 Nov. 1998. Web. 09 Jan. 2013.


Ward, Lorrayne S. "Southie's Changing Face." The Harvard Crimson. The Harvard Crimson, 28 July 2000. Web. 09 Jan. 2013.



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Historical by Di Le


Southie, or Old South Boston had suffered a dark history of deaths of youths as well as its unity in the 90s. South Boston is a community depicted as, “Insular, working class, and Irish are descriptions often tagged to Southie” (Conover). It is predominantly working-class Irish inhabited. “Insular” was also a description for Southie and it has double meaning of narwow-mindedness and small. A tight community faced challenges, as in a New York Times it stated, “Since January, city officials say, about 70 teen-agers -- most of them male -- have been hospitalized for attempts at, or thoughts of, suicide” (Rimer). “Teenagers” attempted the deaths. The number of “70” young adults tried or planned to end their lives, and risk losing the future and education that they already have. And through these attempts, the Southie Community was marked with many young suicides and “thoughts of suicide” plagued the adolescent minds. The big historical impact on South Boston was “busing for school integration…Parents hurled stones, and racial epithets, at school buses carrying the outsiders -- terrified black school children from Roxbury” (Rimer). Southie was an Irish dominant community and at this time integrated “the outsiders.” A change occurred in “school” and the overall community exhibited by the outcry of disapproval from “parents hurled stones, and racial epithets at school buses.” Separation and a sense of lost hope revolved in South Boston. Southie’s history was afflicted with parental detachment from their deceased sons and daughters to suicides, young adults go astray from hope in life, and the disconnection of the community due to integration.


Works Cited:

Rimer, Sara. "For Old South Boston, Despair Replaces Hope." The New York Times. The New York Times, 17 Aug. 1997. Web. 08 Jan. 2013.

Conover, Kirsten A. "Shifts begin to appear in Boston's venerable `Southie' community." Christian Science Monitor 10 Mar. 1998: 10. MAS Ultra - School
Edition. Web. 8 Jan. 2013.