The Sin Bin or Lucy's Heart

This study guide will help you analyze the short story “The Sin Bin or Lucy’s Heart” by Lucy Cross. You can also find a summary of the text, as well as inspiration for interpreting it.

Presentation of the text

Title: “The Sin Bin or Lucy’s Heart” [2000]
Author: Lucy Cross  (pseudonym of Hannah Griffiths)
Genre: Short Story


Below, you can read an excerpt from our study guide: 


The heart Lucy is drawing is the central symbol of the story, and it symbolizes Lucy’s muddled feelings. Her first attempt is “rubbish. I push much too hard on the paper for some bits and then back right off for others. It’s a mess of really dark and really light”. This suggests Lucy’s inner conflict, as she is torn between the “really dark” which is Bethan’s bad influence on her, and the “really light”, which are her upbringing and academic achievements. As she remembers beating Penny and smoking with Bethan, the drawing of the heart becomes even more grotesque. This suggests that Lucy is using the drawing to express her feelings of anger and frustration which she is unable to give words to, even to herself.

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The Sin Bin or Lucy's Heart

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