The English Patient (3) & The Sweet Hereafter Trauma and the Communities “beyond” the Boundaries Outline The English Patient The Sweet Hereafter Plot Summary and Starting Questions Questions Pied Piper Different Parents and EP’s re- Difficulties in interpretations Communication nomads vs. nations; The role of the Lawyer; Kip’s Changes; Wild Nature vs. Enclosed Space Hana’s Homecoming. The Sweet Hereafter Plot Summary Chap VI: the Buried Plane -- Caravaggio’s intrusion into the EP’s storytelling--the ending of 1942 told the first time. (p. 175) Chap VII: In Situ (meaning: in the natural or original position or place 1940) -- Kip’s story of being trained as a sapper; Kip vs. his brother; Erith, where Lord Suffolk die; Plot Summary Chap VIII: The Holy Forest: Kip’s experience; Kip and Hana (217 - ). Chap IX: The Cave of Swimmers -- EP’s story of love re-told to Caravaggio (with two endings/interpretations of the ending) Chap X: August --the endings: birthday party; Hana and Kip’s communication; Kip’s experience of defusing bombs in Naples, Kip’s sudden departure, Hana’s homecoming. Questions How are the EP’s views of his love for Katherine and the latter’s death changed over time? How does he “heal” himself? Besides being used by the nations, and physically and emotionally traumatized by the war, how are these “international bastards” influenced by national boundaries? What do you think about Kip’s radical response to the nuclear bomb? How is Hana’s homecoming different from Kip’s? Are there connections among the three remaining characters? EP’s re-interpretations of their Relationships Chap IX – a lot clearer than the previous account; “Death means you are in the third person”; re-ordering events (247-48) Their relationships: Reasons for their mutual attraction the story of Candaules pp. 232 - conflicts -- e.g. p. 238; EP’s re-interpretations of Katherine’s death 1. 1939 -- Put paints on her body 248 2. Alternating between self-questioning and broader views of time, desert space and life and death. Self-questioning-- curse pp. 257; demon-lover 260 Every person a gift in life; 257 “jackal” and “historian” 258-57; One’s own body as a communal book 261 Nation vs. International Bastards [Madox – died because of nations 243; EP – “wrong name” 251 Caravaggio and EP – thief as a spy vs. intellectual turned into a vacuum. 253- 55; Kip: marked (199) but invisible (196); Kip’s changes Before the news of the nuclear bomb: agile, moves in relation to things 218-19; danger and peace: always concentrated on defusing bombs and admiring the statues and paintings in churches; e.g. 273; 278-79 Mutual support and communication between him and Hana 270 Kip’s changes After the news of the nuclear bombs in Japan: 283 –refusing EP; Brown races vs. Englishman 2886; Traveling against the direction of invasion 290; 295 Hana’s Homecoming The letter she writes to Clara her ability to connect and to face her father’s death; her vision of “home” and “mother”: confirms their plainness and independence. Connections in the Endings Caravaggio – remembers Kip 208; EP – imagines Kip’s presence 298; Kip and Hana –lose contact after he does not respond for a year; Kip – still sees and thinks of Hana 300; Hana – the author still leaves space for her independence; The final connection –or lack of connection? The Sweet Hereafter By Atom Egoyan; Adapted from the namesake novel by Russel Banks, who likes Egoyan’s adaptation a lot. (e.g. the addition of “The Pied Piper.”) A film about the effects of deaths and losses. In the film, the children are all “dead” to their parents. For some critics, it is typical of Canadian films to not see death as an ending or a heroic closure, but as a process or an absent presence in life. Questions What’s the significance of “The Pied Piper”? What do the opening and ending images and the title of the film mean? How many “fathers” or parents are there in the film? How do they each relate to their children? What does Stephens try to do as a lawyer for the victims’ families? Is he justified to do so? Why does Nicole lie in testifying? Whose fault is the car accident? Opening Ending “The Pied Piper” The adults’ betrayal; Children’s being lead an adult by the piper to a beautiful land with no return; One lame child stays behind. Possible contemporary allusions (in Middle Ages): black death; children’s crusade “The Pied Piper” – The film’s adaptation not an allegory The adults, not breaking promises, but mostly unhappy; The pied piper in the film – not a revengeful figure, but one that (wants to) leads a group/a child. Death, Mr. Stephens, Sam Dolores? Billy, follows but not leading. The Powerless: Dolores With an invalid husband; A loving person, her love for the kids shown on the photos she put on her wall; sees picking up the kids as picking up red berries to put in her basket. The Powerless (2): The Ottos The Powerless and Troubled Parents Billy – finding refuge in adultery, when actually he is obsessed by the past. Risa and Wendell – Risa, does not know how to deal with her son; the two always fighting Fathers Betraying or Betrayed? Mr. Stephens & Sam Stephens and Zoe Happy family life in Zoe’s childhood: dangers lurking underneath the happy surface Stephens and Zoe distance between them, after many many disappointments which turns sadness into “steaming piss.” Stephens and Zoe final communication: Still filled with tension but ending with their sharing of fear. Sam and Nicole Sam and Nicole Stephens as a lawyer believes that there is a reason for everything; transfer his grief onto the victims. The Role of Snowy Landscape a contrast to the enclosed spaces of the car, the hotel room, the school bus and the airplane. The Role of Snowy Landscape Smallness of human beings The Sweet Hereafter The Sweet Hereafter a space of sobriety and maturity after the experience of traumas. And everything is strange and new. . .
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