What is the conflict in the book There's a Bat in Bunk Five by Danziger?

Expert Answers
Karen P.L. Hardison eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There is actually a two-fold conflict. One part is Marcy against the world and her parents. The other is Marcy against herself. Marcy feels unfairly treated and has built up within herself an artificial hatred (which corresponds to an artificial conflict) toward her parents and toward her sheltered, well structured and well protected middle-class life. She yearns to "lead [her] own life," to "study literature [and] live [her] own life." At "fourteen and eleven twelfths," she doesn't understand the true meaning behind this cliche. Thus she has a conflict with her parents shown in her animosity toward them and her desire to get away from them and home. Yet she becomes wistful and "homesick" before she ever leaves for camp; this foreshadows an upcoming triumph over this conflict.

Marcy sees herself as capable of leading an independent life, but this is without truly knowing what an independent life entails. At camp, she begins to learn what responsibilities accompany independent living and finds that many--most--of these responsibilities are more than she reckoned on and are more than she can manage on her own. After her experience at camp, she has a new appreciation for what her parents experience in their responsibilities for her and for earning a living--despite complicating problems. Camp offers Marcy a chance to overcome her inner conflict and come to terms with herself through a new understanding of living an independent life of her own.

This summer, I've decided, I'm going to try to be a grown-up, so I'll be able to take care of myself. ... so that when I'm an adult, I'll be ready for anything.

Read the study guide:
There's a Bat in Bunk Five

Access hundreds of thousands of answers with a free trial.

Start Free Trial
Ask a Question