A Cure for Dreams: A Novel Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. What is the premise of A CURE FOR DREAMS?

A CURE FOR DREAMS presents the story of four generations of women as told by a mother to a daughter. The story begins in Bell County, Kentucky, in the early twentieth century.

2. In whose voice is the Introduction written and what is the message?

In an Introduction dated December 15, 1989, Marjorie Polly Randolph says that her mother Betty Davies Randolph died the previous month. She says that she, her mother, and her grandmother, Lottie O' Cadhain Davies always looked younger than their actual age. Marjorie states that her mother loved to talk, and she loved listening to her mother.

3. How does the author use punctuation to indicate the speakers in the story?

Some of the punctuation gives clues that the story is a transcription of an oral history. The entire text is within quotation marks. This means that Marjorie is writing the text as it is told to her by her mother, Betty. The italicized passages are the direct quotes or exact words spoken by Betty's mother, Lottie.

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