Essay on Lullabies for Little Criminals

1570 Words Nov 30th, 2012 7 Pages
Childhood: the most delicate period of our lives. Taylor Shaw 5/4/2012

Childhood is a crucial time in a person’s life and it needs to be kept innocent and pure for the child’s well-being later in life. The most important recurring theme in the novel Lullabies for Little Criminals by Heather O’Neill is the loss of innocence at a young age and the profound complications later in life. The complete loss of innocence is built-up with multiple different experiences over time. For Baby, these experiences are: when she is first exposed to drug use, when she spends time in foster care and when she becomes engaged in prostitution.

The first experience that Baby has which causes her loss of innocence is her first exposure to the
…show more content…
Many of the things that Baby witnesses while she is in foster care are things that most people will never see in their entire lives. This causes her further pain and hardship, and greater loss of innocence.

Additionally, Baby is considered “crazy” by her foster mom, Rachel, and that causes her to be treated differently and it is a severe blow to her self-esteem. Baby accidentally overhears a conversation between her social worker and Rachel, in which Rachel says “...the child is wild. It’s not her fault. But she will never be normal.” (45). Hearing this causes Baby to feel inferior and it is a large knock to Baby’s self-esteem, which is already really low. Baby is forced to come to terms with the fact that she is undoubtedly different from other children her age. This is also a harsh fact for a young girl to understand and this ends up causing more collapse of her innocence.

Furthermore, while Baby is in foster care she is forced to live without the love of her parents and she has to accept that she is alone in the world. Baby’s mother passed away when she was just an infant, resulting in her father being the sole provider for her. The following quotation shows Baby’s lack of a mother when she says “I wanted to think about my mother, too, but I couldn’t.” (44). Jules does not tell Baby much about her mother and therefore Baby is not able to think about her. Baby is forced to live

Related Documents