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The Guide

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					The Guide by R.K. Narayan
         begins en media res: after Raju’s first life at the railroad and prison, but before
         the beginning of his next life at the temple

         What do the first four pages tell us of Raju?

         What are the parallels between Raju’s first life and his second? between the
         setting of his first life and the second?

         What are the parallels between the railroad and the river? the differences?

         How does Raju’s first life as a tourist guide prepare him for his second life as
         the “new priest” of the temple (28-29)?

         What schools does Raju attend? characterize each:
         (home school, tamarind tree, “formal” school, jail, the temple)

         Why interrupt the story of Velan and his difficult sister with the story of Raju’s
         education? (juxtaposition)

         Chapter two ends with Raju aware that he must decide what he must do after
         prison, and he decides to become the “new priest” of the temple (28-29); how
         does this relate to chapter three which follows immediately: his father’s
         business?

         What might the railroad equivalent of the crocodile be? (play with the image of
         the crocodile)

         Rosie’s introduction (55) is also en media res, but note the earlier mention of
         Rosie and Marco (7); what is the significance of Rosie and Marco as
         characters? the significance of their names?

Raju
as a child
   • in his parents’ home
   • in the “hut shop”
   • in school

as an adult
   • in the city as a hustler / tourist guide     Look closely at the parallels here!
   • in the country as a homeless holy man

				
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