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The opening chapter depicts Stevie talking about the best time to cry. The fact that the opening is concerned with this helps to humanize him from the start. The construction of identity as one in a cell also helps to bring out some level of humanity in him. Additionally, I think that Stevie is understood through the journal of his thoughts. This help to bring to light his construction of a human being who has perceptions and feelings about where he is and in what he is struggling. In chapter 3, when Stevie says that "living is the punishment," there is a firm grasp of the idea that a life that is incarcerated is a painful one. While he may be guilty of something terrible that he committed, it is a condition that helps to bring to light that he fully experiences the pain and struggle of such actions. Myers fleshes out the notion that Stevie is not an inmate as much as he is a young man in jail, and moments such as these are reminders of this.
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