Friday, February 22, 2013

This Seat's Taken: AP Lit, February 22, 2013

Focus: Interpreting the stream-of-consciousness voices of Beloved

1. Announcements! And a challenging literature crossword for your enjoyment...

2. Warm-up: Chapters 2, 3, 4 and 5 are told from the stream-of-consciousness perspectives of Sethe, Denver, and Beloved.

If you have a spade, you will be Sethe in this exercise.  You will be using Chapter 2.
If you have a club, you will be Denver.  You will be using Chapter 3.
If you have a heart, you will be Beloved.  You will be using Chapter 4.
If you have a diamond, you will be Beloved.  You will be using Chapter 5.

a. Sit in groups of 3 or 4 with each of you representing a different chapter.  Sit with your backs to each other.  
b. Through a blend of prose and poetry, you will bring synthesize the voices of these characters by writing a line from your chapter that you find significant and passing it to another "character" in your group. 
c. That "character" will then find a meaningful response or question from his/her assigned chapter, write it down, and pass it to whichever "character" he or she wants to.  
d. Continue passing the sheet of paper until it's mostly full, and be prepared to read it aloud.

As you listen to other groups share their poems, what do you notice about the voices of Sethe, Denver, and Beloved, and what do you notice about the complex dynamics of their relationships?

3. Socratic seminar: Beloved, Part 2, Chapters 1-5

1. Finish reading Beloved to prepare for our final Socratic seminar on Monday.  Please complete your timeline as well.

2. If you have not yet turned in your metacognitive, please do so on Monday.  Be sure to include a hard copy of your poem as well.


  1. Beloved Socratic
    Chapter 4: When Beloved talks there is weird spacing and she keeps talking about the man who died on her face. What does this mean? Pg. 248
    This maybe because she watched so many people die.
    She and Sethe have the same face, maybe it is related to her father.
    There are no periods in this chapter but there are periods in the next: Why is this?
    Does this mean Beloved is more capable in the next chapter?
    She still speaks immaturely and can’t form sentences well, like a stream of conscious which conveys a sense of youth.
    In these chapters, memories and points of view come together. They might not be distinguishable. Each voice is necessary.
    Rememory-why? –g. 254
    Breaking up re and memory: makes it a thought and putting them together it completes a concept of the past.
    She’s not detached but reliving memory.
    Remaking the memory.
    Pg. 238-239: Why was she whipped?
    Really good question: In chapter 2 in Sethe’s voice there are no paragraphs, but Denver’s voice is the most structured? Why?
    Denver’s not so dependent on the past.
    Denver actually knows what she wants and more so than Beloved and Sethe.
    Pg. 237: “That I was…time.” Maybe she’s not as dependent on Beloved as she thinks she is.
    Pg. 246: She only cares about Beloved not Sethe anymore.
    Denver was born into freedom and this allows her to be independent and have more structure to her life.
    Denver’s the only one who escaped physical harm and isn’t disconnected from the family.
    The past drives Beloved and Sethe. Denver isn’t affected by past.
    Denver couldn’t hear so she blocked out the part of her past that would have been most destructive on purpose somehow.
    One would think that she would block out her hearing after her mom told her about it. She lost her hearing between asking and getting an answer. What does this mean?
    Denver is allowed to be healthy and alive for unknown reasons.
    Pg. 245 “I spent all…me.” Denver was at first so eager for her mother’s attention but now she’s terrified of being killed. “Maybe there’s…again.”
    She seems angry at her mother, which contributes to her lack of affection.
    Sethe is at fault for what she has done. The reader is supposed to react the way that Baby Suggs did and the reaction is frustrating for the reader.
    Pg 239 Sethe thinks she is a great mother, “My love…carving.” But the reader doesn’t see her as a hero like she does.
    They have been stuck in the house for 18 years so it affects her view of what is right and wrong.
    Eye imagery: She is doing everything blindly. When she tries to kill her children, her eyes are affected.
    Pg. 240 “They stopped…like a daughter.” Did she plan on coming back as a ghost? Why does this make her a good girl?
    Morrison might be trying to emphasize not the cruelty but the connected family situation and for that reason she is a good daughter.

  2. Why is it that the only ones that can stay in the house are Denver, Beloved, Sethe, Baby Suggs? Why are all the men chased out? The sons? Paul D? Stamp Paid?
    Maybe this is because only a mother is crazy enough to stay in the house.
    The house seems to be haunted but they see it as a refuge.
    Baby Suggs can’t live in the house anymore.
    There’s a deeper unhealthy connection between Beloved, Denver, and Sethe because of milk and blood.
    Denver says that her head is cut off every night. What does this mean?
    Denver thinks the only place Sethe can’t get her is Baby’s room.
    Man without skin?
    Did Beloved have a given name? “Not right…cutter for.” Do they remember that name?
    The man with no skin is symbolic of death like a skeleton.
    Defense of Sethe: Sethe wanted to kill everyone including herself but didn’t have the time. If she did, they would have died together as a connected family.
    What about the teeth?
    The timeline seems daunting.
    The men’s not being able to stay is interesting.
    Margaret Garner drowned herself and her other daughter.
    Kara’s quote: People assume Denver lives a charmed life but she has no mother figure.
    It is interesting that she thinks that Beloved came to wait for her father with her.
    It is strange that she has the connection with the dead man on her face.
    Why is Stamp Paid willing to approach the house and nobody else?
    The significance of the repetition of the coming out of water and Beloved’s coming together?
    “Daddy is coming for us.” Who says this? It’s in Beloved’s chapter but it’s unclear.
    Let’s pay attention to Paul D again.