In the novel Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis, what is the Home and who stays there? Why does Bud not want to go back there?

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The Home is an orphanage. When the novel begins, Bud Caldwell is staying there. Readers are told that Bud is being adopted by a family that day. We are also told that Jerry Clark is being adopted. The only other character from the Home that readers get to meet is Bugs.  

Bud does not want to go back to the orphanage because it is overcrowded. The most likely reason for the overcrowding is the Great Depression. Bud, Not Buddy takes place during that time period, and orphaned children were quite common. Thousands of children were without parents after parents starved to death or abandoned their kids. Orphanages were filled beyond capacity, and conditions suffered as a result.  

Bud's description of the orphanage hints to readers that the rules were very strict there. Meals were especially strict. Bud tells readers that no one could talk during meals. If someone talked, he or she was not allowed to finish the meal. 

At the Home, after grace was said, we weren't allowed to say boo. . . At the Home, if you got caught talking during mealtime, you'd have to get up and leave your food.

Once Bud begins being adopted into Calloway's band, Bud really doesn't want to go back to the Home. The band members give Bud a sense of belonging and family, something he hasn't had since his mother died.

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The Home in the novel Bud, Not Buddy is an orphanage where children who have no parents or guardians live. Bud mentions several times that the orphanage is getting crowded because more and more kids keep coming every day. He doesn't like the packed atmosphere and being around sick babies who cry uncontrollably. When Bud visits a Hooverville, he mentions that when he was staying at the Home, he had to do "tons of dishes." One can surmise that Bud does not enjoy doing household chores on a consistent basis. When Deza Malone asks him why he won't go back to the Home, Bud explains to her that there are way too many children joining the Home. Bud also mentions that there is a bully by the name of Billy Burns, who teases him every night. Later on in the novel, Bud gets invited to eat breakfast with Lefty Lewis' family. Bud finds their conversations at the table amusing and compares his experience to mealtimes at the Home. Bud says that, at the Home, nobody was allowed to talk during meals. If someone was caught talking during a meal, they had to get up and leave their food behind. Overall, Bud hates the Home and does not want to go back because it is overcrowded, strict, and some older boys bully him there.

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