Short Story 'St. Lucy's Home For Girls Raised By Wolves'

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The short story, “St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves,” written by Karen Russell, describes the lives of wolf girls living at St. Lucy’s to learn how to function in human society. This program uses a handbook, called The Jesuit Handbook on Lycanthropic Culture Shock, and the nuns use it to guide their students. The narrator and main character, Claudette, develops partially to the Jesuit Handbook guidelines. She follows the handbook when she identifies with her pack, but veers away once she establishes her individual identity. In Stage One, Claudette’s character does match the handbook’s expectations, until the nuns decide to intervene. In The Jesuit Handbook on Lycanthropic Culture Shock, the first stage is expected to …show more content…
In Stage Two, the handbook explains that the girls will be stressed out and extremely uncomfortable. The girls will miss certain aspects of their wolf culture and spend time dreaming about them (230). Claudette is extremely uncomfortable and agitated during this period. Like the handbook stated, she missed aspects of her wolf life. She would, “[dream] of rivers and meat” (230). She wasn’t happy with St. Lucy's and missed her favorite parts of wolf life. Her daydreaming shows here that she is developing according to the handbook in this stage. Moreover, she is irritated and uncomfortable. She and her pack would,“...snarl at one another for no reason. [She] remembers how disorienting it was to look down and see two square-toed shoes instead of [her] own four feet” (230). Claudette is irritable, to the point where she is even growling at the people she loves most. This action supports the idea that she is extremely uncomfortable and stressed, which matches the handbook. Seeing two feet instead of four contributes to Claudette’s confusion, furthering proving she is bewildered and uncomfortable at this point, which matches the guidelines set in the handbook for Stage Two. Claudette also withdraws into herself and becomes extremely miserable. She would, “bristle and growl, the way that [she’d] begun to snarl at [her] own reflection as if it [was] a stranger”(234). This is further evidence that Claudette’s stress is mounting and she’s becoming extremely short tempered. Therefore, in Stage Two, Claudette matches the curriculum from the

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