Lesson 1 (from Chapters 1-4)
Kurt Vonnegut's satirical science fiction novel Cat's Cradle opens with an overt literary allusion to Melville's Moby Dick and likewise makes a religious allusion to the Bible when the narrator invites the reader to call him "Jonah." This allusion serves to connect the narrator to the thematic "futile search for truth" in Cat's Cradle. In this lesson, students will explore and discuss the allusions, narrative style, protagonist, and tone established in Chapters 1 and 2 of Cat's Cradle.
Research Activity: Literary and religious allusions refer to overt or subtle references to other works of literature or to religious texts within a novel. In the opening of Chapter 1, the narrator says, “Call me Jonah.” Conduct research on the allusions made in this sentence and develop a presentation or written paper that examines the allusions. What are common themes between Cat’s Cradle and the works alluded to? What...
Aligned to the following Common Core Standards:
- ELA-Reading: Literature RL.9-10.1, 9-10.9, 9-10.10, 11-12.1, 11-12.3, 11-12.10
- ELA-Writing W.9-10.8, 11-12.8
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