EB STUDY-TOOLS /Practice
Grass & traits
My first question: Does the book [David Copperfield] ever say what significance the piece of grass is that Mrs. Trotwood keeps everyone off of?
I have one more question, what are some traits of David Copperfield?
Thanks so much,
* * *Dear D..,
For the "grass problem", You'll answer it, if you first answer some other questions. For example: what is the first time in the story that this grass business shows up? What's the second? What's the last? Are they all the same? What's common in them? Does David's aunt keep "everyone off", or just someone or someones? Who is ms Trotwood? Does she just try to protect the grass? Does she feel that she owns the front of her house - or the whole area (in fact, that's the impression little David had if I remember well)? Is it a neurosis, a mania, that she has? Does she love "a view without donkeys" or "a view without boys"? Does she love order or cleanness? Is she maybe afraid of something?
There are more than one answers to the "grass problem" or to almost each one of the questions above, and, to be sure, there are more questions too! If you need a way out, you'll find it, whether an easy or a tough one.
If we search for "some" of David's traits, we won't find anyone. What are we looking for? Maybe for traits that Dickens needed to emphasize because they proved significant for David's life or for any other reason. For what reason, when, how? We are looking for traits that he particularly had, for traits that he shared with only a few people, or for the most enduring elements of his character? Are we, maybe, looking for traits he had to different degrees - and is such a difference important? What's the source of this or that trait? Is it himself, or some other person or some specific circumstances? Does a quality change in accordance with its source, or does she remain the same no matter what the source is?
And: we want to compare David with other characters, or to compare between different ages of his, or between various incidents in his life? From these, more questions follow accordingly. How are we going to define when an age ends and another starts? Does Dickens offer any clues? Are there any marks in the novel why this incident is more important that the other? What's the first thing that comes in your mind when you think of David? Is there anything more important than this? Why?
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