Lesson 1 (from Prologue and Part 1: Chapters 1-2)
In "Prologue," Alessandra is introduced as an elderly nun who is discovered to have a tattoo after her death. This reveals the end of Alessandra's life, and then the novel backs up to her childhood. The objective of this lesson is to examine this type of introduction and the suspense it builds.
1) Class discussion: Who is "Prologue" mostly about? Why does the nun die? What are the nun's wishes for after her death? Why does the Mother Superior have a difficult time following these directions? Why do the nuns undress the body? What do they discover about the deceased nun's tumor? How do they react to this? What else is discovered on the nun's body? Why is it surprising that she would have a tattoo?
2) Brainstorm: As a class, students will brainstorm a list of reasons why the nun may have a tattoo on her...
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