The Basic Training of Pavlo Hummel Chapter Abstracts for Teachers

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Act 1, Part 1

• The scene is set during the Vietnam War in the late 1960's.

• Pavlo, a young American soldier, drunkenly rambles to a Vietnamese barmaid/prostitute (Yen, pronounced Ing) and another drunken soldier about a girl named Joanna that he was involved with and how his mother wrote Joanna a letter calling her a "slut."

• A grenade is thrown into the room and Pavlo drops to his knees and seizes the grenade.

• In the silence following the explosion, Ardell appears and asks Pavlo whether he has killed and whether he enjoyed it, and Pavlo's answer to both questions is "yes."

• Pavlo realizes the explosion killed him. Ardell suggests that being dead makes Pavlo furious, and at first Pavlo denies it.

• Then, Pavlo admits that he is angry and explains that when he picked up the grenade, he was thinking about throwing it away, reminiscing about how amazingly the...

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