Psychological Abuse In Addie's As I Lay Dying

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Set in the fictional Mississippi city of “Yoknapatawpha,” As I Lay Dying follows the Bundren family through a disturbing, yet enlightening journey to Addie Bundren’s hometown to bury her body. Throughout this journey, the story is told by a total of fifteen different narrators that reveal the challenges and intentions of each character. After reading this book, the reader can understand that every child in the Bundren family has suffered from some type of psychological abuse. According to the NSPCC (National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children), “psychological abuse is defined as the ongoing emotional maltreatment or emotional neglect of a child”. Emotional abandonment and physical abuse can fall into this form of abuse. Although …show more content…
In this section of the book, Addie describes her feelings towards the school students, stating that she enjoyed whipping her students in order to feel some kind of emotion. Because she has this emotional detachment, Addie may have suffered from depression. Her father may also be a part of why she does the things she does. She says things such as, “…my father used to say that the reason for living was to get ready to stay dead a long time,” which leads the reader to believe that she might have suffered from some kind of psychological abuse as well. She also says, “I would hate my father for having ever planted me,” which means that there might have been some animosity between the two. Whether she was abused or not is uncertain, but the fact remains that she had a severe lack of emotion. She did not believe in love, the word or the feeling. She describes her children as being an invasion of her “aloneness” and how she began to hate Anse after Darl was born. Her lack of emotion, as well as Anse’s general idiocy, could be the reason why the Bundren children suffer the way they do. The eldest child of Addie and Anse Bundren is Cash Bundren. Out of all their children, he is the most reserved. When Addie dies, he is also the most unaffected. Because he experienced the emotional abandonment from his mother the longest, he puts everyone else’s needs before his own, wanting to please his family, especially his mother. This may be because he felt like he did not please her as a child. Cash loves his mother, but he also understands that she was very

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