They Cage the Animals at Night

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They Cage the Animals at Night “To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” This quote explains who Jennings is inside, but on the outside everybody is trying to change him into a new person. In the story, They Cage the Animals at Night, a young boy faces many obstacles and negative outside influences. They Cage the Animals at Night is a memoir about Michael Jennings Burch’s life. Since he was eight-years old he has lived in many difficult places such as orphanages, foster homes, and his own home. Jennings stays kind, heartfelt, and caring to everyone even though he’s had a lot of pain and suffering. Jennings always stays true to himself. Jennings has spent most of his life in orphanages. The orphanages are cold and dark. The food is horrific, the sleeping conditions are terrible, and the place is very unsanitary. The nuns don’t show any respect for the children. For example, when Jennings wasn’t in the correct spot in line, Sister Frances took him and dragged him to his chair. “She grabbed me by the hair and dragged me to chair twenty-seven. (…)” Even though all these circumstances can make Jennings think negatively, he has held strong and maintained a positive attitude to the children and some nuns. One foster family that took Jennings for a period of time was The Carpenters. They were cruel parents that made Jennings into a slave to them. They hardly fed him, they never loved or cared for him, and they never showed any appreciation. For example, Mrs. Carpenter only fed him muck that was cold and awful. He snuck around the house and found a box of jelly powder. He would get beaten when he broke a bowl. “She grabbed me by the hair and yanked me from the chair. She punched me in the side of the head and threw me to the floor. I drew in my legs and arms to make myself a smaller target, but

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