Anthem Ayn Rand. English 9 Honors Summer Reading Requirements

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1 English 9 Honors Summer Reading Requirements There are two reading requirements for incoming freshmen taking Honors Introduction to Literature. One is Ayn Rand s Anthem; the second is The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. In the following document, there are reading guides and various activities. Please read all directions carefully, as in some sections, there are options for choice, while in others, all activities must be completed. All work will be handed in on or before Friday, August 29, All work must be typed using Times New Roman text, 12 pt. font and double spacing. A heading should appear at the top of the first page and be formatted as indicated below. A title should follow, centered on the next line and contain the information necessary to determine which activity follows. Student first and last name Introduction to Literature August 2014 Title Your required work (to be handed into me) should include the following: Anthem: 1. Artifact (see Anthem information) 2. Explanation The Book Thief: 1. Collage on a half piece of poster board. This must be accompanied by an explanation. Please do ensure that your name is on the back of the collage. Anthem Ayn Rand Background Ayn Rand was born in Russian and immigrated to the United States in the early twentieth century. Anthem was written in 1937 and it details the essence of collectivism. It presents a society where individualism, where the word I, no longer exists. It is a story of the horrors of a time where the individual is swallowed by the collective, but it is also a story of the triumph of the human spirit, of the piece of humanity that will forever cling to the idea that each individual has a voice that matters.

2 Vocabulary In order that you are able to properly understand the novel, there are terms that you need to understand. You will not be tested on these terms, but your understanding of the novel will be greatly aided if you know what these words mean. Abyss Convulsion Infamy Redemption Undefiled Alms Corruption Impotent Reverence Vindicate Atone Dais Lassitude Sanction Wretch Avert Deign Mandate Shackled Boon Depraved Martyr Spangle Brigade Detention Portal Solidarity Brine Eugenics Pulpit Solitude Cesspool Fraternity Pyre Taut Collective Illustrious Raze Transgression Background Utopias and Anti Utopias: This type of fiction is called anti utopian meaning that the world is presented as it should not be. Anti Utopian novels present collectivism as the worst possible society. The society is presented as tyrannical yet has a highly technological economy, a combination that Rand did not believe possible. She believed that economic progress depends upon freedom, that the free mind is the source of technology, prosperity and progress. Her collectivist society is stagnant and primitive. Philosophy: Philosophically, this is novel about a hero s struggle against his society. Individualism vs. Collectivism: The primary issue in the novel is individualism versus collectivism. In her society, the individual exists only as part of a group. He does not matter as an individual. Rand s philosophy encompasses individualism as the right of every man to be an individual and to have individual rights. It does not mean that an individual has the right to do whatever he wants. Selflessness: The novel dramatizes Rand s view that the self is destroyed in a collective society. No one has a name since, in collectivism, individuals are interchangeable. To prefer one person over another is to commit the cardinal sin: the Transgression of Preference. Self assertion is forbidden. The result of this is a subhuman society: what makes a human being a human is having a self, which means having a mind. Society becomes a mass of mindless robots, people with no motivation, no ambition, no hope. They are unable to create anything and the society they live in has no room for creativity. Egoism: Egoism means concern for one s own interests. Equality represents the unconquerable human spirit, the affirmation of life. In contrast, all of his fellow citizens are gray, passive, nonentities; they are the living dead. Free Will versus Determinism: The novel shows what it means to have free will. It depicts a world where people s lives seem to be determined by outside forces but it s actually a world where people have free will. The heroic characters have free will, but the masses do also. They are choosing to be robots; they were not forced to obey. Man has the power to direct his own life. He isn t doomed to despair and defeat. If he is willing to rely on himself rather than be pushed by events, he can achieve self confidence.

3 Reading Guide When the story begins, sometime in the distant future, the hero (known as Equality ) is a young man in his late teens or early twenties. Speaking in first person plural (Anthem is his diary), he describes his society and his attitude towards it. Complete the study guide to help you with recall when you return to school in August. This will also provide us with a base to start class discussion. Chapter 1 1. Describe the society in which Equality lives. Consider the political structure, technology, social relationships, quality of life and education. 2. Equality states that it is very unusual for men to reach the age of 45. Why? 3. Why does the Council of Vocations assign Equality the job of street sweeper? Is it due to error, incompetence or a more sinister motivation? Explain. Chapter 2 4. Of the whole range of feelings possible to man, why is fear the prevalent emotion in this society? 5. Explain the following: the Great Truth; the Unmentionable Times; the Uncharted Forest; the Evil Ones; the Great Rebirth. 6. What word is Equality struggling to recapture? Why is mentioning this word the only crime punishable by death in this society? How does this word contradict the ideals of this society? What could its rediscovery possibly lead to? Chapter 3 7. What does Equality discover in this chapter? How important is this discovery? Describe four to five ways in which it would help society, and make life easier or more enjoyable. 8. Outline some of the Council of Scholar s beliefs, and Equality s refutation of those beliefs. Chapter 4 9. Discuss the appropriateness of Equality s new name, Unconquered. Chapter Equality understands that his invention will benefit mankind greatly; however, this was not his main motivation in conducting his experiments, and it is not the primary source of the great joy he experiences. Discuss this fact. 11. In your opinion, why is Equality so interested in seeing his own image at this point in the novel? What emotion is he feeling? Chapter The old locks and lack of guards in the Palace of Corrective Detention indicates that prisoners never tried to escape. Why not? Chapter Outline four of the Council s reasons for rejecting Equality s invention. 14. What are the real reasons behind the Council s rejection and fear of the gift? 15. What does Equality mean when he says at the beginning of the chapter, We are old now, but we were young this morning?

4 Chapter What is Equality experiencing for the first time in this chapter, and what does he feel as a result? 17. Explain why Equality laughs when he remembers that is the The Damned. 18. What does the Uncharted Forest symbolize in the novel? Chapter In this chapter, Equality questions the morality of his former society. Contrast what he was previously taught about solitude, good, evil, and joy to what he now believes. Chapter Describe the house and its contents in your own words, and explain why Liberty and Equality find it so strange and unique. Chapter What great discovery does Equality make in this chapter? 22. Explain the quotes in your own, and discuss how they can be applied to your life: a. Whatever road I take, the guiding star is within me. b. For the word we must never be spoken, save by one s choice and as a second thought. 23. What does Equality now realize is the proper goal and purpose of his life? Chapter Why do the main characters take the names Prometheus and Gaea (hint: look into Greek mythology)? Why weren t they allowed to choose their names in their old society? 25. What does Prometheus plan to do in the future? 26. Prometheus reaches the important realization that To be free, a man must be free of his brothers. Cite several examples from the novel that illustrate the truth of this statement. We will discuss this novel in depth at the start of the new school year. After discussion, you will take an objective (multiple choice/matching/true false) exam and write an essay to assess your knowledge of the novel. Project: Required: Due on or before Friday, August 29, 2014 You need to create an artifact (a 3 dimensional object) that represents some aspect of the novel. It must also be symbolic (stand for something beyond itself). An example would be a light bulb, as it could stand for light and electricity in itself, but also for the light of the individual and the light of knowledge that Prometheus carries. (You may not use this one!) Accompanying the artifact must be an explanation that includes both the literal and symbolic meanings. You may be as creative as you like; you may use any medium you wish as long as you can get it into school.

5 The Book Thief Zusak There are multiple reasons for reading this text. It provides a different perspective than typical novels about WWII in that it takes place in Germany and tells the story of those German s who were in opposition to Hitler s philosophies. It opens the door to allow readers a glimpse into the minds of people who were unable to voice their opinions, who were unable to fight tyranny and racial discrimination. It tells the story of the things that German people could do in a way that they could still survive. The questions and activities that follow are for you to think about and process. It will not be collected or graded. It will, however, make your read a more enjoyable one and assist you in discussing the novel. You may also want to write down some thoughts or questions as you read the novel. Death Death is the unusual narrator of this tale. Most of us want to personify death as horrifying and a villain. Zusak s novel presents him in a completely different light. 1. How is death dealt with in American society? Is it a closed off topic or can we talk about it freely? How is death represented? How do we deal with death in media, pop culture, literature and poetry, or in other works that you may have encountered? 2. As you read, make a list of Death s characteristics. Compile that list and then characterize Zusak s character, Death. 3. Why is this choice of narrator effective or ineffective in telling the story of Liesel. Why do you think that Zusak made the choice for Death to narrate his tale? Words The power of the word is a thematic consideration of The Book Thief. The power of the word is powerful in that it gives Liesel knowledge and freedom, but it is negative in that Hitler uses words to fill a nation with hatred for his fellow man. Storytelling Storytelling is a powerful use of words. 1. How is story telling used in the novel? What does it accomplish? 2. How does storytelling help the characters to cope with the torments of war, oppression, tyranny and loss? 3. How has storytelling helped you to cope with troublesome memories? Does the retelling of the story help you in some way to reclaim that moment and those words? Style The style of the novel differs from the ones you may have encountered in the past. 1. What is different about how this novel works? 2. How does it affect your reading of the text? Does it change the way you read, compared to the typical format of a novel?

6 Project: Required: Due on or before Friday, August 29, The central question of the novel is how human beings are capable of such brutality and also have transcended suffering with acts of extraordinary love and courage. Some would credit God with this dual power, but this novel places firm responsibility with men and women, and marvels at their goodness, their frailty, and their potential for evil. Death writes that he is haunted by humans (548). We are all haunted by this duality and our imaginations and emotional connections with each other are our only savior. Find a way to visually represent these ideas in the form of a college. 1. The collage must be at least a half poster board in size. There should be no white space on the collage at all. You may use whatever you have available to you at home or you can purchase additional supplies. 2. Your poster board must contain at least two quotes from the novel and touch on some of the major events/ideas presented in it. 3. Accompanying the collage must be a paragraph that describes your collage and your choices for its contents. You must also explain your choice of quotes and why they were meaningful for you. Be sure to have the same heading on this paper and firmly attach it to the back of the collage.

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