What is the main message of the novel?
Join Date: 10/16/10
Join Date: 10/20/10
I think the author is trying to expose the small ways in which a society can become comfortable with treating people badly. Even the "good" characters were thoughtless (see, for example, the cousin in the the military who was dismissive of Mary though he was generally a nice person). We need to take unpopular and uncomfortable positions when that's the right thing to do. I think the author is encouraging us to be courageous when standing up for what we know to be right (like June when she steals the car and drives to the funeral).
Join Date: 11/14/11
I think that there were many messages in this book.
But, one thing that is standing out in my mind is that there are times, in the book and in my life too, that things have been said that I don't agree with. Sometimes I have thought- well, everyone is entitled to there own opinion. So, being a fairly quiet person and a "peace maker", I haven't always said anything. Surely, there were people who disagreed with how things were- yet they didn't speak up. This is happening today with disrespectful comments not being challenged etc. I don't feel that I will most likely change anyone's mind. However, I really felt the unfairness of things in this book. If I don't agree to what is happening , with any prejudicial talk, I hope to have the courage to speak up with "I don't agree with that". It doesn't have to be a speech- God knows I've never been able to pull off a speech in my life! But, I have the right to speak my opinion, and the responsibility to react...whether it is a religious bias, a racial bias, sexual orientation bias, etc.
Join Date: 04/28/11
I was so struck by Jeann's words. I too, used to not say anything when something prejudicial was said, having been the brunt of it at one time in my youth. As an adult I am much wiser, and tho I believe that all are allowed to have their own thoughts, I cannot dismiss a remark that is prejudicial to anyone, whether it is about race, religion, sexual orientation, etc...I am a Jewish, Catholic Protestant, so am very ecumenical and was raised in a very democratic household that welcomed all people. When we moved to the south, it was a little different for me. I have learned to bite my tongue when it is necessary, but for the most part tell people that everyone is God's child and should be seen that way. I know that's what Jubie thought...
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