Jeannette's faith in her father and Dad's drinking problem and his issues with masculinity are the central themes in these sections of The Desert. First, recall that Jeannette has the best relationship with her Dad out of all of her siblings. For instance, he has told her she is his favorite, and she has defended him against Lori and Brian's complaints about his inability to carry his weight in the family. Her decision to ask Dad to sober up, then, is indicative of her growing maturity and more complete perception of Dad — even she has to admit he is not the man he claims to be and that drinking is a large part of that. Dad's decision to return to drinking foreshadows more problems to come — will Jeannette's faith diminish? Or will she continue to believe in her father's dreams?
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