The Shipping News Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. Account for Quoyle's cherished hope that he was, in fact, a changeling.

Quoyle has not been nurtured by his birth family. His father terrorized him, an example being the brutal 'swimming lessons' that gave Quoyle his lifelong fear of water. His father favored his other son, Dick, and both made disparaging, demeaning remarks about Quoyle. As a consequence, Quoyle attempts to distance himself psychologically from these appalling people.

2. What are Quoyle's expectations of marriage and how is the reality different for him?

Quoyle had expected from marriage something like the wonderful relationship Partridge and his wife experienced. Quoyle imagines sweet occasions when he and Petal would entertain friends at backyard barbecues, just like the Partridges. The reality is, for Quoyle, a humiliating life with a wife who is addicted to sex with anyone but her husband and who is uninterested in the two little girls produced by the marriage .

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This section contains 4,663 words
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