Thursday, February 24, 2005

Let's go with Ruminations on Race for $1000, Alex...

We had fun the other night playing Jeopardy! with categories and answers from Philip Roth's The Human Stain. Thanks to my student Frank Jewell for creating this.

Setting
100 It is the hometown of Coleman Silk: What is East Orange? p. 85, 98, 108.
200 Coleman’s Alma Mater: What is NYU—New York University? p. 110.
300 The main setting of Coleman’s professional teaching career: What is Athena College? p. 82, 84, 190.
400 Delphine’s native country: What is France? p. 189.
500 Faunia’s two places of employment: What are Athena College and the dairy farm? p. 286-87.

Characters and Conflict
100 As a youngster, this character observed the phenomena of “Negrophobia”: Who is Coleman Silk? p. 85, 98, 108
200 This character was diagnosed with PTSD: Who is Lester Farley? p. 353-54.
300 Character, author and narrator of Coleman’s story: Who is Nathan Zuckerman? p. 211.
400 This character dies before revealing the secret diary of literacy: Who is Faunia Farley? p. 296-97.
500 Character who is “. . . congenitally appalled at everything American”: Who is Delphine Roux? p. 188

Double Jeopardy

Motifs and Symbolisms
200 It was the youthful endeavor of “Silky Silk”: What is boxing? p. 95-99.
400 A striking similarity to Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings: What is the caged crow—freedom and captivity—color black? p. 168, 171, 281.
600 The irony and satire of Coleman’s AND Walter’s “precision in language”: (to his class): “Does anyone know these people? Do they exist or are they spooks?” p. 6. (to his attorney, Primus): “I never again want to hear that self-admiring voice of yours or see your smug fucking lily-white face.” p. 81. (from Walter to Coleman): “Don’t you dare ever show your lily-white face around that house again!” p. 145.
800 It is, perhaps, a classic Greek tragedy with a modern day hero: What is Coleman’s biography? (Iliad: “the ravening spirit of man.”) p. 335, 15, 193, 196, 345.
1000 Metaphorically, they are “Spooks” in Coleman, and Lester’s lives: What is Coleman’s denial of his mother and father’s race? p. 20-21, 79, 345. What are Lester’s memories of Viet Nam, death of children, and the death of his marriage? p. 72, 73, 67, 353, 355, 358, 360.

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