I. Characters—Identify each of the following characters and gather information about their actions and personalities:
Mother (“Miss Cahline” or Caroline)
Father (Mr. Jason)--actually Jason III
Jason IV (usu. referred to simply as “Jason”)
Quentin (daughter of ??)
II. Events—How many different scenes or events does Benjy remember?
What are the key elements of each memory?
What does Benjy love? What upsets him most?
Who was married?
What were the four siblings (Caddy, Quentin, Benjy, and Jason) like as children? Who was their leader? Describe the various relationships among them. What have they become as adults?
Why are there two Quentins? What happened to the first? Who is the second? Describe her relationship with her Uncle Jason.
What happened June 2, 1910?
Why did it happen?
III. Images and motifs—climbing up trees to look in windows, climbing out windows and down trees, running away, funerals, weddings, swings, water (the branch), fire, smells, crying, golf, Uncle Maury and the Pattersons, “Sasspriluh,” sickness, watches, time, virginity, child support payments
IV. Discussion topics for part 1
1. What happened the day “Damuddy” was sick? Who got wet? Who fought? Who took the lead? Over what did Caddy and Frony argue? How did Caddy find out what the adults were doing? What was really happening?
2. Compare the two scenes where Benjy sees people in the swing outside the kitchen door. Who does he see in each case? How are the situations similar? How are the reactions he receives different?
3. Briefly describe the argument that takes place at the dinner table April 7, 1928. Who argues? Over what? What threats are made?
4. What changes in Caddy and Benjy's relationship occur as Caddy reaches adolescence? How does Caddy attempt to placate Benjy? At what point can she no longer do so?