Lesson 1 (from Chapter 1)
Centered on themes of identity and self-discovery, Peter Matthiessen's In Paradise takes place in Auschwitz, where more than 100 people come together to participate in a meditation retreat at the former Nazi death camp. Part I: “A Guest of Poland,” Chapter 1 opens as Clements Olin (who is not named until later in the novel) arrives in Cracow. Objectives for this lesson include conducting research on author Peter Matthiessen and Cracow, Poland, and identifying and discussing the setting of In Paradise.
Research Activity: Conduct research on author Peter Matthiessen and the setting of Cracow, Poland. How far is Cracow located from the Auschwitz concentration camp? Examine the history of Cracow prior to and during World War II. How much damage did Cracow see from the war?
Group Assignment: Assign students to groups of 3-4 each. As a group, develop a presentation that details and discusses the history...
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