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The Women in the Castle


A nuanced portrait of war, and of three women haunted by the past and the...
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Discuss The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck:
How do you think the events of the war and its aftermath shaped each of the women and their perceptions of themselves?

Created: 02/10/18

Replies: 2

Posted Feb. 10, 2018 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 1480

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How do you think the events of the war and its aftermath shaped each of the women and their perceptions of themselves?

How do you think the events of the war and its aftermath shaped each of the women and their perceptions of themselves?


Posted Feb. 14, 2018 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
JLPen77

Join Date: 02/05/16

Posts: 205

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RE: How do you think the events of the war and its aftermath shaped each of the women and their perceptions of themselves?

The war/aftermath strengthened Marianne's confidence in her strength, moral purpose and her righteousness, to the point that it blinded her to the need for empathy, forgiveness, tolerance. I think it left her lonely too.
It strengthened Ania's ability to live by her wits, her capacity for self-denial in order to survive by deceiving others as well as herself. She came to see herself as dishonest and unlovable, afraid to trust others with her truth. It revealed to Benita how empty she was, how lost inside herself, getting ahead through her looks, not valuing love until she lost it -- an emptiness and a guilt that led her to end her life. Fortunately (it is fiction, after all) unlike Benita, both Marianne and Ania came to their insights in time to reach out to others and seek forgiveness.


Posted Feb. 22, 2018 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
paml

Join Date: 10/25/12

Posts: 83

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RE: How do you think the events of the war and its aftermath shaped each of the women and their perceptions of themselves?

JLPen77 does sum up what the war did to shape the women. I do believe that Asia and Marianne became resolved in their decisions both good and bad in their later lives. So glad that the novel included current times and what these women were doing. They had regrets and realized the mistakes they made, but I believe they were able to forgive themselves, and each other, but not forget.


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