The Cay Topics for Discussion

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1. Early in the novel the narrator describes his mock battles with his friends and the submarine attacks upon Aruba and Curacao. How do these details help to prepare the reader for Phillip's later experience? What emotions are aroused by the destruction of the S.S. Empire Tern?

2. Henrik Van Boven is Phillip's closest friend in Curacao. How has Phillip's attitude toward Henrik changed after his stay on the cay?

3. Henrik and his mother are very different from Phillip and Grace Enright.

Why does Taylor emphasize these differences?

4. Grace Enright hates living in Curacao. What are some of the things she objects to? Is Taylor's portrayal of Mrs. Enright largely based on gender stereotypes? Is the negative portrait balanced by the fact that she remains calm when the S.S. Hato is torpedoed?

5. Phillip always speaks admiringly of his father. How does Taylor indicate the...

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This section contains 409 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Cay Study Guide
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