“Through the Tunnel” Questions
In the first sentence, a conflict is revealed. How does the geographical description of the
setting infer conflict? What about the path?
What does the mother’s “very white” arm suggest?
Jerry’s mother is a widow. How might this characteristic fuel her inner conflict?
What diction does Lessing use to develop the bay as a symbol for temptation – danger –
and movement from safety/innocence?
How does the title relate to the story’s theme of rites of passage and growing up?
What/who are the chief antagonists of
this story? Who is the protagonist?
What does the bay represent? The
Why is mom nameless?
What point of view is the story told in? Omniscient or limited omniscient? How do you
Who is the author of “Through the Tunnel”? What did you learn about her?
Write a paragraph that comments on Lessing’s characterization of Jerry.
What makes Jerry a dynamic character? Use examples from the text that
demonstrate his change.
Describe Jerry’s internal conflict and how that internal conflict drives his
How does Jerry’s external conflict with nature become tangled with his internal
What is one potential theme of the story, other than our shared theme (rite de
passage) and how is the characterization of Jerry used to facilitate this theme?
Mr. Holt English 10