10/18 – 10/19 ASP Chapters 8 & 9

Period 1 will miss Wednesday due to the PSAT, so they will have their seminar on TUESDAY during class.

Period 5 will have their seminar on WEDNESDAY during class and will have a reading day on Tuesday.

For your lab book, I’d prefer if you did the pick five passages/analyze one prompt that we did last time, but if you’ve already done it with write three questions answer one, that’s fine too.

As always during seminar, if you didn’t get to put your two cents in, go ahead and comment here on this post within twenty four hours, provided that:

  • You add something to the discussion that we didn’t get to address OR you offer a nuance on the discussion that might change how we see things
  • You explain clearly how your thinking connects with the class discussion we actually had.
  • You reference the text as specifically as possible.

On the flip side, contributions that…

  • summarize the discussion
  • repeat things we already discussed
  • identify thoughts about the text without reference to the discussion
  • reference general/vague ideas that may or may not specifically relate to the actual text
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5 thoughts on “10/18 – 10/19 ASP Chapters 8 & 9

  1. I noticed that on pages 104,105, and 113 Finny repeats the same question to Gene, “What is all of this crap about no maids?” but I’m not sure why he repeats it so often. I also noticed on page 113, Gene takes a breath of the gymnasium air and describes it like the scent of “bodies battling against each other” and in the paragraph before that, he describes the locker room as “dull green and brown” that lead to the pool through this beautiful “glistening white” archway and I felt like that description was like the description of battle field and then heaven. So, there is definitely a parallel between the world that is going on in the real war and the competitive war at Devon.

  2. We talked about the Butt Room in today’s discussion, but very briefly. I just want to mention that in a previous discussion, we talked about how the Butt Room is the abyss on Gene’s hero’s journey. He has succumbed to the temptation, he has joined them in their communion. This follows the kind of pattern that we talked about, where one thing happens and its fine, then the second time, it goes down the hole. This is the second time that the Butt Room is mentioned, the first time, he escaped, going all the way down there and he “didn’t have a smoke.” The second time, he succumbs, he’s lost his innocence, so much that Finny had “stopped [Gene] from going as well.” The statements that follow this further talk about Finny’s denial, something we talked a lot about during today’s discussion. Finny wants a world “inhabited by just himself and [Gene], where there was no war at all.” But Finny has also gone down into the Butt Room, he has entered once and left. Soon will come a time, like Gene, where Finny will succumb to the Butt Room, where Finny will realize the truth of the war, where he will fall into his own abyss.

  3. What I had to say is a lot like what Megan said. I think the locker room scene is very important but we didn not get the chance to discuss it. On page 113, Phinny descends with Gene into the dark, dull, gray locker room. The locker room is supposed to represent the battlefield or the war, and Phineas is disgusted with it. I think the locker room represents adulthood and reality while the big white archway leading to the pool represents Phinny’s false reality he created. It could also represent heaven as well, foreshadowing his death.

  4. In the seminar today we talked about Finny and how he denies that there is a war. I really wanted to talk about one sentence that I didn’t get a chance to throw in that really supported this idea.
    On page 114, Finny and Gene’s conversation;
    Gene: “Now I understand. You’re still under the influence of some medicinal drug.”
    Finny: “No, you are. Everybody is. That’s what the whole war story is, A medicinal drug.”
    I think both Gene and Finny understand that there is a war but Finny doesn’t really realize how bad it is. He is saying everyone is so obsessed that he compares it to a drug. Finny basically says no one can really dodge the true fact there is really a war. I think he isn’t so drawn into the war is because he can’t really walk and also how he says that fat old men were really the ones behind the war. I feel like he doesn’t want to believe there is a war going on, in other words, he wants to deny it but he can’t.

    Also I wanted to talk about the relationship between Gene and Finny.
    On page 120 There is a passage about Gene
    ‘Then, for no reason at all, I felt magnificent. It was as though my body until that instant had simply been lazy, as though the aches and exhaustion were all imagined.’
    Then Finny says to Gene:
    “You’re not even winded.”
    “You found your rhythm, didn’t you, that third time around. Just as you came into the straight part there.”
    ….”You didn’t even know anything about yourself.”
    This moment really shows the true influence Finny has on Gene. In the beginning of the book we get a sense of how Finny used to be a sport type of guy and here is Gene trying to be like who Finny was. That moment when Gene felt magnificent and then lazy showed how Finny pushes Gene to be better of himself. I think Gene is starting to realize who he is with Finny’s influence.
    And then on page 121:
    Gene’s passage;
    ‘He seemed older that morning….he seemed smaller too. Or perhaps it was only that I, inside the same body, had felt myself all that once grown bigger.’
    In this passage we get a sense of vampirism. He compares himself how he had grown bigger but Finny seemed smaller. This shows Gene growing in strength while Finny isn’t able to do anything because of his crippled leg/weak.

  5. During the past chapters Finny has been denying that there is a war going on. I don’t think he wants to accept that he is not able to enlist so Finny is trying to keep living in the past. He is also denying the war between him and Gene.
    During the first four-five chapters of the book, Gene was living through Finny. But now that Finny is injured, he is living through Gene. Ex: Olympics.

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