Bastard Out of Carolina

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Poverty is the deprivation of food, shelter, money and clothing that occurs when people cannot satisfy their basic needs. Poverty can be understood simply as a lack of money, or more broadly in terms of barriers to everyday life. Throughout the novel “Bastard out of Carolina” it shows a panoramic view of how poverty affects people lives, thinking and behavior. It shows how it leads to serious violence, mental instability, anger and abuse in the case of the main character “Bone” stepfather “Daddy Glen”. Although it can be argued that poverty doesn’t lead directly to abuse and pedophilia as it was in the novel, I will elaborate more in this paper of how poverty is the string to a set of these problems. But also the novel shines a light on the unwillingness of parents to take actions against abuse. The problems that chronic poverty brings were well documented in the book. The character of “Daddy Glen” struggled in the book to hold a job, which led him to move his family from places to places and somehow develop anger toward his stepdaughter Bone. Certes his abuse and pedophilia toward his stepdaughter in some views might not be a reflection of the poverty and instability he was going through but some other studies also show otherwise. The number one risk factor for child maltreatment is poverty. Studies have shown that “lower income was correlated with a higher incidence of abuse” (McCoy pg. 26). Although all families that are poor are not guilty of maltreatment, it is still a huge risk factor. In the case of Ruth Ann Boatwright, her family is so poor that her mother is desperate enough to prostitute herself for money to feed her family. Poverty can put a lot of stress on a family and put the parents on edge. Unemployment is closely linked to poverty. Daddy Glenn was constantly out of a job, which forced the family into having one income that was consider low

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