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Delirium by Lauren Oliver Novel Study 2013

A comprehensive analysis of Lauren Oliver's dystopian romance Delirium. Imcludes character sketch, plot graph, setting description, conflict, theme, symbolism and RCS. Enjoy!

Emily Waldman

on 8 April 2013

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Transcript of Delirium by Lauren Oliver Novel Study 2013

by Lauren Oliver Plot Graph Symbolism + Theme Setting Description Delirium Novel Study They discuss Lena’s mother
They race in the water and Lena babbles a bit about the Wilds and the Invalids
Alex gently explains to her that he actually is an Invalid; she becomes very frightened and runs away Important Event
Lena meets Alex at Back Cove
Early the morning of her procedure, Lena decides that if Alex doesn’t come rescue her, she will commit suicide in order to escape the procedure.

Grace sneaks up to Lena’s room and unties her

At that moment, Alex comes with a motorcycle

He tells Lena that she has to run and climb over the fence; she will have 30 seconds, tops
He promises that he will be right behind her

She runs and makes it over the fence, but then she looks back
Alex hasn’t moved an inch, and all the regulators are running towards him.
He yells at her to run, which she does. Climax Lena goes to help plot their escape with him at their favourite hiding place, an old abandoned house on the outskirts of Portland
Door is locked
As they realize that they have been caught, dozens of regulators begin to run towards them
They try to run; Alex gets away, but they knock Lena out
Lena awakes at her home, only to discover that her procedure has been moved up to the next day Important Event
Lena & Alex are Caught She was so shocked and upset about how everyone lied to her about her mother, and allowed her to believe that her mother had abandoned her
She tells Alex that she wants to go with him to the Wilds, forever; he warns her of the dangers, saying that she can never, ever come back
She tells him that she loves him; this is a huge deal for her, as the word ‘love’ was such a taboo Important Event
Lena Decides to Run Away to the Wilds with Alex As Lena describes her mother to Alex, he realizes that she greatly resembles a woman he used to know in the Crypts
They snuck into the ward and Lena discovered that her mother had been kept in there for nearly 12 years…
…until she had escaped a few months earlier.
She had escaped because she had repeatedly carved the word ‘Love’ into the walls, until she finally carved the letter ‘O’ so deep that a chunk of wall fell out and she ran away, most likely to the Wilds
Lena is, as one can imagine, shocked by this; for twelve years she had believed that her mother had committed suicide! Important Event
Lena Discovers the Truth about her Mother
Lena and Alex are able to sneak past the guards as one of them is actually a Sympathizer
Alex shows her his trailer, which Lena loves. It is filled to the brim with books from ‘before’, with poetry and love stories. He reads some to Lena.
Lena becomes far less naïve as she begins to understand that nearly everything she had ever been told about Invalids, and the Wilds, and the Deliria and life in general were lies. Important Event
Alex takes Lena to visit the Wilds Hana and Lena make up; Hana invites Lena to another party.However, Lena refuses
- Raid
She sneaks out later in the evening and races towards the party to warn everyone
The Regulators = chaos (dogs biting everyone, men hitting girls over the head with clubs and batons, etc)
Lena is bitten badly by a dog, but before she can be knocked out Alex rescues her and takes her to an empty shed where he tends to her leg and they lie low until the Regulators are gone
He tells her about his life in the Wilds and why he likes her so much; she feels like everything she has ever known to be true is falling apart in front of her
He kisses her (!!!) and she realizes she is in love with him
**I think that this is a complicating incident because it changes Lena’s character immensely. It changes her beliefs and thus changes the course of the plot.** Complicating Incident #2
She eventually decides to sneak out and go to the party
She sees Hana, but things are still awkward between them so they don’t talk a lot
Lena didn’t realize that the party is Co-Ed, and becomes so freaked out that she starts to run away; however she is stopped by ALEX
They talk and Alex explains to her why he lied about recognizing her
He asks her to dance, and Lena reluctantly complies; she later says that dancing with him made her world explode…
He asks her to meet him the next day at Back Cove; she says yes. Important Event
The Party Introduced to main characters, including Lena, Hana and Lena’s family

The Evaluations- an assessment that decides your future
The Protest- Invalids (people who have refused the cure and are living in the wilds) cause a stampede of cows through the labs during the Evaluations.
Lena sees Alex for the first time, laughing at the protest
**I think that this is the introduction because most of this part of the book is spent introducing the characters and the world that they live in** Climax Lena & Alex are caught Lena decides to run away to the Wilds with Alex Lena discovers the truth about her mother Lena visits the Wilds with Alex The Party/ Lena meets Alex at Back Cove Complicating Incident #2 Complicating Incident #1 Hana & Lena meet Alex Introduction Delirium Plot Graph l
Lena & Hana go running
They run in an illegal area, near the Labs, and Alex (he is a Guard for the Labs) catches them
Lena immediately recognizes him, but he pretends to have never seen her
He tells her, privately, to meet him at Back Cove at 8:00
She is stopped by Regulators on her way, and is late; Alex is nowhere to be found…she is strangely disappointed by this! Important Event
Hana and Lena meet Alex Lena walks in on Hana listening to ‘illegal music’
Hana tells her about all of the rebellious things she has been doing, such as going to parties after curfew and talking to boys
She invites Lena to another party; Lena freaks
Hana tells her that she is nothing like her mother; despite the fact that Lena has always strived to be different from her mother, she is very hurt by that comment
**I think that this is the complicating incident because it changed the course of the plot and caused Lena to realize that despite everything she has ever said or thought, she really does admire her mother and what she stood for- love.** Complicating Incident #1 Introduction "After the the procedure, I will be happy and safe forever". It's okay; I'm alright; I can do this. I'm just a girl- an in between girl, five-two, nothing special- but I can do this, and all the curfews and patrols in the world aren't stopping me. It will kill me, it will kill me, it will kill me.
And I don't care. They've lied about everything- about the fence, and the existence of the Invalids, and a million other things besides.
They told us that love was a disease. They told us it would kill us in the end.
For the very first time I realize that this, too, might be a lie. I'd rather die my way than live yours. My Opinion WHAT I LIKED ABOUT IT: Lena was a beautiful character- it was very easy to relate to her. She went through a lot of development throughout the book and it was amazing to watch. Lauren Oliver is a fantastic writer. Her writing is very descriptive and it flows beautifully. The book was chock- full of theme and symbolism. It was like the book was one gigantic symbol. WHAT I DIDN'T LOVE: The entire third chunk was basically a giant description of how Lena felt about Alex. Alex was one of those 'perfect' characters- he didn't go through a lot of development and he didn't seem to have any flaws. At all. I think there should have been more of a back story to the whole concept of the Deliria. Magdalena "Lena" Ella
Haloway-Tiddle Physical Traits Determined Confident Brave & Courageous Her family has been affected by a series of scandals related to the Deliria Hana is her best friend Prone to nightmares + bouts of depression Short- only 5'"2 Athletic build "I'm not ugly, but I'm not pretty, either." Hazel eyes 'Muddy'
brown hair Seventeen years old Not thin, but not fat Personal History Lena lives with her Aunt, Uncle and two cousins, Jenny and Grace SHE ADORES GRACE The cure never worked on her mother- she could still love She 'committed suicide' when Lena was six Lena has lived with the pain + the stigma of this ever since Lena's Character in the Beginning of the Story Gullible Reserved Fearful She is very quiet + doesn't like to talk to
anybody she doesn't know well She is terrified or the Deliria and all that it entails
' She easily believes everything that she has been told about the Deliria, not questioning it for a moment Insecure She doesn't like herself very much
She feels like her mother didn't think that she was worth the pain of the Deliria
She considers herself a far lesser being than Hana
She doubts that anybody would choose her, had they the choice Compassionate 'She didn't care, and you don't care.
Nobody cares.' 'You have to understand. I am no one special. I am just a girl. I am five feet two inches tall and in-between in every way. But I have a secret. You can build walls all the way to the sky and I will find a way to fly above them. You can try to pin me down with a hundred thousand arms, but I will find a way to resist. And there are many of us out there, more than you think. People who refuse to stop believing. People who refuse to come to earth. People who live in a world ithout walls, people who love into hate, into refusal, against hope, and without fear. Lena chooses to go to the Wilds with Alex, despite the dangers. She stands up for what she believes in and refuses to have the procedure. She knows what is right and what is wrong, and she refuses to let herself live her life as an emotionless, lobotomized robot. She leaves Hana, who she was once completely dependant on, not knowing whether she would ever see her again. Lena often surprises herself with her own nerve. She shocked even herself with the decision to go to the party after she fought with Hana, and later she goes to a party during a raid to warn everyone. By the end of the novel, Lena is self confident and no longer very insecure. 'Alex always made me feel beautiful...'
Through his love, she learned to love herself. She is no longer afraid to disobey her family. She understands that her mother didn't want to leave her. She no longer compares herself to Hana,
Nor does she need her in order to be happy. She no longer lets her height define her. When Lena starts to do something, she refuses to give up. She refuses to give in and take the Cure.
She would rather die. 'I'd rather die my way than live yours.' She always perseveres, even when she is running. She won't stop trying. Lena is very kind to her little cousin, Grace, who grew up without a mother. She risks her life to warn people she doesn't even know about the raid. She became very emotional when she encountered a dog who was shot during the raid. She covered him so that he could die without being picked apart by other animals. The incident shook her up and forced her to see her society differently. Relationship between Lena & Hana Lena was very dependant on Hana. They became friends at a time when she was very isolated from her peers. Her mother had just 'died', presumably because of the Deliria, and children refused to talk to her because they thought she could have caught it. In the first half of the book, Lena is desperately clinging to Hana, not wanting to let her only friend go. She is scared to be alone in the world, with no one, and won't let go of their past, despite the fact that they are clearly moving in opposite directions. Their friendship is eventually saved by Lena's revelations about their society, and the introduction of Alex into their lives. By the end of the story, their dynamic is reversed; Lena is the one letting Hana down gently, telling her that she is planning on leaving Portland with Alex. Relationship between Lena & Alex Lena & Alex form a connection during her evaluation, when she saw him laughing at the protest. They ran into each other a couple more times, before finally dancing at the party. Lena said that dancing with him made her world explode. A few weeks later, he rescued her from a Regulator during the raid, and her world turned upside down. She felt as though everything she had ever known to be true was a lie. Alex had just saved her from the people who were supposed to be protecting her from people like him. He told her that he had always seen her as different from everybody else- 'awake', he said. Alex was the catalyst of most of Lena's development as a character. He changed her ideas about their society, and opened her eyes to the vast web of lies it was built upon. He thought she was beautiful, and smart, and funny, and told her so. He loved her, even though she didn't think that she was worthy of his love. He helped her to define herself as a person, separate from Hana and her family- not as a burden to her aunt or as shorter than her best friend, but as beautiful, brave and strong. WARNING: **SPOILERS** Making Connections Visualization Reading
Strategies Visualization Conflict Plot Summary Main Characters Setting Introduction The Crypts Person vs. Self Which reading comprehension strategy helped you to understand the conflict? HOW WAS THIS CONFLICT RESOLVED? Person vs. Person WHICH READING COMPREHENSION STRATEGY HELPED WITH THIS CONFLICT? HOW WAS THIS CONFLICT RESOLVED? Making Connections Character Sketch Love is a disease- Amor Deliria Nervosa Totalitarian government The cure is mandatory Invalids= people who refuse to take the cure and go into the Wilds Lena Haloway Hana Tate Alex Sheathes Portland, Maine, USA About 100 Years in
the Future 17 Years Old Protagonist Novel is in
her perspective Orphan Lena's best friend Rebellious Lena's
love interest An Invalid...
pretending to be Cured... Lena vs. Lena Inner conflict Past Beliefs vs. Current Desires The procedure= safety, normalcy Alex/ The Wilds= uncertainty and danger ...yet also love and happiness. Lena eventually chose to go with her heart and escape to the Wilds with Alex. WHAT LED TO THIS DECISION? When Lena discovered the truth about her mother, she realized that she had been lied to her entire life. She couldn't continue living a lie. HOW DID THIS CONFLICT HELP PROGRESS THE PLOT? It led to the climax
It had a massive impact on Lena's
development throughout the text Making connections helped the most. I made a text to self connection with Lena. I could understand Lena's inner conflict, and I get why it might have been difficult for her to make such an important decision regarding her future. Hana vs. Lena Hana= wanted Lena to be more adventurous and brave...she wanted to do rebellious things, and didn't care who she did it with. Lena= felt pressured by Hana and was scared of her rebellious ways. She was lonely and hurt that Hana seemed perfectly capable of leaving her behind. Lena and Hana made up and their friendship resumed as normal. WHAT LED TO THIS DECISION? Hana became scared after the raid and scaled down her resisting...
Lena got together with Alex, which is twice as bad as anything Hana ever did. HOW DID THIS CONFLICT EFFECT THE PLOT PROGRESSION? Hana played a really important role in the climax Making text to self connections I've been in Lena's position, so I could empathize with her. I was impressed with how Lena handled the situation- she didn't beg or grovel I was able to gain better insight into Lena's character development because of the connections I made with regard to this conflict. Life isn't about
simply existing... "You know you can't be
happy unless you're
unhappy sometimes, right? THEME When Lena wasn't able to spend time with Alex, she missed him, which hurt.
However, she said that the pain made it worth it. Lena's Height
her low self- esteem
and her emotional growth & development throughout the novel. She constantly compares herself to Hana.
Hana is 5"9, while Lena is only 5"2.
This symbolizes how Lena feels about herself in comparison to Hana. Correlation to Theme ‘The only thing you could say about me is that I’m short.’ –Lena, chapter two it's about understanding that you have to experience pain in order to appreciate happiness. - Hana If you were happy all the time, you would become desensitized to it. I recognized this theme in Lena's intense grief for her mom. Her first six years of life were wonderful, because her mother was actually able to show her love and affection. When her mother died, she was thrown into a household full of emotionless, unfeeling people who were not able to love her. Lena could appreciate the stark contrast because she knew how it felt to be loved, and therefore could understand how awful it was to be unloved. SYMBOLISM Her sense of self worth was diminished greatly when her mom died....................
and she has incredibly low self esteem. If Lena had Hana's confidence, she might be a lot 'taller' (rhetorically) Reading Comprehension Strategies “You have to understand. I am no one special. I am five feet two inches tall and in-between in every way. But I have a secret. You can build walls all the way to the sky and I will find a way to fly above them. You can try to pin me down with a hundred thousand arms, but I will find a way to resist…” Lena, Chapter 27 Theme: Don't let things define you; define yourself Lena defined herself based on her relationships with other people By the end of the novel, she defined herself based on her own expectations and values. Text- World Connection Text- Text Connection Text- Self Connection The Deliria vs. Drug Abuse Delirium vs. Matched by Ally Condie Lena & Running vs. Me & Writing Delirium Matched futuristic societies which appear to be utopian because of the expulsion of all catalysts of pain and unhappiness no choices love is a disease Girls are 'matched' with their life partners An important element of humanity has been taken away in order to create a more 'peaceful' society' Each novel in in the first person perspective of a teenage girl Lena Haloway Cassia Reyes Both girls believe in their respective governments and believe that their methods of controlling them are in their best interests Both girls only begin to doubt their governments after they fall in love Love triangle theme Forbidden love theme Regulators Officials Both societies have strict limitations on self expression All forms of art must be approved Only 100 of everything Both stories used a story/poem as a recurring symbol Romeo & Juliet Do Not Go Softly Into That Good Night The Coldness Visualizing helped me by allowing me to create vivid pictures of the characters and settings in my head. It therefore made it more interesting to read. It also allowed me to put everything in sequence and understand how the setting correlated with the mood. Based on the mood, I was able to create more inferences and predictions on what would happen (especially with the setting visualizations). Making connections helped me gain further insight into the text by allowing me to better relate to, and therefore understand, the characters actions. I was able to form inferences about the characters motives by using my prior knowledge of the people/ concepts/ books/ events that I connected it to.
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