Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Letters of a Peruvian Woman - Discussion Questions

I've posted your discussion questions up on the wiki, but you can also see the revised versions here:
  • In what ways is eighteenth-century French culture gilded? (think: "Furniture which I thought to be made of gold, is gold only on the surface, its true substance is wood; in the same way, what they call politeness thinly covers their shortcomings with an outward show of virtue" (59).
  • How does the voice of the Peruvian woman work as a critique? (think: of French culture? of women's roles in French society?)
  • How does the novel's epistolary structure become integral to the development of ideas about language, communication, and writing?
  • How can we understand Zilia's exploration of the differences between the written and spoken word?
  • What is the signficance of the novel's references to sun and light? (, knowledge, divine fire, etc.; go to Meghan's blog for an answer to this)
  • What do the roles that Zilia inhabits tell us about her relationship to her environment (Paris, French countryside, salon, Peru, etc.)

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