What happens in chapter 12 of Lyddie?
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I can give you a brief overview of the chapter, but I suggest you go to enotes and read over the events again so you better understand.
Lyddie gets a letter from her mother telling her that her little sister, Agnes, is dead. This makes Lyddie work even harder, and she doesn't even complain when the machines are made to go faster in order to increase productivity. Prudence quits her job at the factory, nursing a cough that doesn't go away. Conflict among the girls is caused by the petition that is being circulated to improve working conditions at the factory. Betsy wants to sign it, feeling they're treated no better than slaves, but Lyddie wants to keep things the way they are so she can make as much money as she can for her family.
In chapter twelve, the book describes how Lyddie is now tending the same number of looms, yet they run much faster, increasing the workload significantly. She doesn't mind, though, since she is paid well, at least in her opinion. She reads Oliver Twist when she has time, to improve her reading skills.
She receives a letter from her mother saying that her little sister Agnes has died and asking her to send money to help support the other two children. She struggles a bit with hearing that Agnes died, and resolves to work harder so she can pay off the family's debts.
She also gets into an argument with her roommates. Amelia feels that they should all be more religious and criticizes Lyddie for reading Oliver Twist on the Sabbath. Betsy feels that the girls are being treated like slaves at the factory and is determined to stage a walk-out and then leave to go West. She also toys with the idea of signing the petition that has been circulating. Lyddie, of course, feels desperately that either of these is the wrong course of action because it would leave them without a job. They argue for some time about it without coming to any conclusion. The chapter ends as the curfew bell clangs and they settle in to sleep for the night.
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