The Thorn Birds Study Questions & Topics for Discussion

This Study Guide consists of approximately 43 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Thorn Birds.
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The Thorn Birds contains much material on the ways that families deal with crises, especially large social crises like droughts, war, social class issues, and spiritual and personal subordination, but also more intimately related issues, such as emotional crippling, unplanned pregnancy, and death. As The Thorn Birds has been criticized as a "potboiler" type of book, a good discussion might begin by examining how realistic these issues are as they are presented in the novel, especially as they are presented in light of their chronological context.

1. Discuss the role of Fee and Paddy Cleary. Are they good parents? Could or should they have been better?

2. Is Mary Carson a completely evil or bad character, or does her desire for Ralph humanize her in any way?

3. Is Dane's death from drowning an expected event? Can you see it foreshadowed in the novel? Or is it simply a convenient plot...

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This section contains 215 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy The Thorn Birds Study Guide
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