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Transcript of Marigolds
1. How old is the narrator in the story?
The narrator is 14 almost 15.
2. What is unusual about Miss Lottie's marigolds?
They do not fit in with their environment-Miss Lottie's ugly, decaying property.
3. What does the narrator do that she later regrets?
She destroys Miss Lottie's marigolds.
4. Note the most prominent features of the story's setting. How do they affect the narrator's outlook on life?
The story takes place in an impoverished rural black community during the depression. The dreary setting shape's the narrator's hopeless outlook.
6. Identify the climax of the story. What changes does the turning point initiate in the narrator? Miss Lottie?
The climax occurs when Lizabeth destroys the marigolds, only to come face to face with Miss Lottie. For Lizabeth, the is "the moment when childhood faded and womanhood began". For Miss Lottie, it is the end of the last spark of beauty in her life.
7. Miss Lottie's marigolds are central t the story. What do they symbolize?
8. The narrator and Miss Lottie respond to their impoverished surroundings in different ways. What message does the story convey about the impact of poverty on people's lives? What other themes does the story impart?
The story suggests that poverty limits people's lives and deprives them of much of life's beauty. It also suggests that a barren life can take different forms but that people can find ways to create beauty and counteract such barrenness.
9. Do you agree with what the author says about innocence and compassion?
10. Can "Marigolds" be considered social commentary on racial segregation?
Associating details like "the brilliant splash of sunny yellow" with the sun's energy suggests that the marigolds symbolize beauty that has life-affirming power.