Bastard Out of Carolina
by Dorthy Allison
Rising action: As her mother finishes this story, she drives her daughter to the store she stole from. The mother begins to tell another story, this one about herself. She tells her daughter how when she was younger she worked at a strawberry farm. She would hide the unripe strawberries under the good ones, to make her work easier. She was caught later lying about this. Her mother punished her. This showed the young girl that lying had consequences.
Climax: The young girl is forced to return the candy by her mother. At first she is remorseful, but then she gets angry. She is mad that her mother would make her return the candy, mad that she can't have the candy, and mad that after all this, the storekeeper bans her from the store.
Falling Action: After they leave the store, the young girl drives past it often. Whenever she does, she is filled with anger. She has however, learned her lesson; never steal.
Resolution: There is no resolution in this story. It ends with the young girl being angry that she can't go into the store any more.
The Young Girl
The young girl is never named, however we learn throughout the story that she has many different characteristics. All of her characterization is done indirectly. The reader learns about her through how she acts in different situations. When she steals we see that she is daring and sneaky. When she gets caught and has to confess to her mother, the reader learns that she has lots of respect for her mother. When she is forced to return the candy and gets mad, the reader sees that she has less respect for other people, and gets mad when she doesn't get what she wants.
The young girls mother is very wise. She knows exactly what to tell and make the young girl do to teach her a lesson. Mama is very kindhearted, yet firm.Through the mother's stories, the reader sees that the mother has gained lots of knowledge and wisdom through her experiences. All of the mothers characterization is done indirectly in how she teaches her daughter a lesson.
The Store Keeper
In the eyes of the young girl, he is her worst enemy. However, he is only doing what is right for his store. The man is described to be fat, loud, and the young girl says she can smell the sharp scent of aftershave coming off of him. This is direct characterization of him, however there is also some indirect characterization as well.