Student Question

What types of conflict does Lyddie experience in chapter 10 of Lyddie?

Quick answer:

The main conflict that Lyddie has to go through in chapter 10 is between herself and her new working environment. Lyddie finds her first full day on the factory floor totally exhausting. Yet somehow she needs to keep working for the sake of her family. In that sense, an external conflict, Lyddie vs. the factory, generates an internal conflict.

Expert Answers

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Lyddie's first full day on the factory floor proves to be an exhausting, soul-destroying affair. The work is extremely difficult and must be carried out in an environment full of dust, debris, and deafening noise. By the time she gets back to the boardinghouse, poor old Lyddie is just about fit to drop. In fact, she's so tired that she almost can't eat any supper.

This is a prime example of an external conflict—Lyddie vs. her working environment. The factory clearly presents a massive challenge to Lyddie as it does to all the girls who work there. Like them, she must somehow battle against the harsh, almost unbearable conditions in which she's forced to work. In due course, Lyddie will rise to the challenge and show herself to be one of the hardest workers in the factory. But for now, she must be wondering what she's let herself in for.

The external conflict in turn generates an internal conflict. As we've already seen, Lyddie finds it hard to cope in her new working environment. But at the same time, she has to keep going if she's to provide for her family. They're relying on the money she earns from her factory job, and so quitting is not really a live option for Lyddie at this juncture. This means that Lyddie will have to try and come up with a coping strategy that will help her adapt to her new job.

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