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November 13, 2015

Emerging from John Wyndahm's _The Chrysalids_


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Class,

In the comment box below,

. . . the note-taker/scribe from each group should retype the question your group discussed today in class and provide an answer with quotations from the text to support your answers. You MUST put the page number (or, paragraph number if there are no page numbers) in parentheses after any quotation used.

Enter your work on this text as prescribed in class. For example:

Remember: I have to "approve" all comments so you won't see it immediately after posting. After hitting submit, you should see a screen that confirms this.

We are beginning to use some concepts in our discussions that you may or may have had practice using before. I want to be sure that you have a clear understanding of the words we use in class (no more blank stares!) so be sure you are looking up words you don't feel you yet "own" (means, making it a part of your personal vocabulary) by utilizing your dictionaries to the fullest.

Dr. Hobbs

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To see other English-Blog entries on the subject of Literature, please click HERE.

Posted by lhobbs at November 13, 2015 12:25 PM

Readers' Comments:

Emily Finck
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 400ST: The Post-apocalyptic Imagination CA01
16 November 2015


Question: Part One #9
David has two dreams: a happy one of a fabulous city (pg. 7) and a nightmare (pg. 30).
What are some of the things he finds appealing in the happy dream? Explain using quoted passages from the text to support your answer (page numbers in my copy differ from those in the question).


Answer:
In John Wyndham’s The Chrysalids, the main protagonist David has two set of recurring dreams one is a pleasant dream while the other is a nightmare. To understand the deeper meaning of the pleasant dream the nightmare will be analyzed first. The nightmare began when David met Sophie, a deviation, who other than her sixth toe is a normal young girl. Despite Sophie’s being different and David being the son of Mr. Strorm “Waknuk’s resident preacher” he gets along with her, that is until he starts to fear for her life (Wyndham 26-7). The nightmare is symbolic of the fear David has for his life but the life of Sophie as well, all deviations are culled and in the dream David has “Sophie” is the one being culled not the “mutant calf” (Wyndham 28).


On the other hand, David has dreamt on several occasions a quite pleasant dream one of a city, David says, “before he even knew what a city was” (Wyndham 1). What is so splendid about this dream is that the city lies within a large “blue bay” with “streets, boats, and buildings” that lie on the waterfront (1). David says that the scenery in the dream though shockingly different from what he is used to is breathtaking and more advanced than anything he has ever seen. However, the fascinating aspect of the dream is the mechanical “birds” that line the sky (1). Later on, the reader finds out this land David dreams about is a real place with people just like him, his friends, and Petra it is a haven for deviations. This dream city is a place in which David and the others do not have to live in fear of their lives just because they are different from everyone else.

Posted by: Emily Finck at November 14, 2015 09:01 PM

Q: What does David’s nightmare suggest about his nature and character? What are the dangers he may have to face? Use concrete examples from the text as support.

A: David has one dream and one nightmare over the course of the first four chapters in Chrysalids, each with a different meaning of significance.

In the first chapter, David is dreaming about a futuristic-looking city which is very different from Waknuk. For example,there were buildings which “were unlike any (David) ever knew. The traffic in the streets was strange, carts running with no horses to pull them; and sometimes there were things in the sky, shiny fish-shaped things that certainly were not birds” (1). This not only details the conditions of David’s life (which are clearly much less advanced than the city he dreams of) but also alludes to Sealand, the otherworldly area where telepathy is welcomed.

In Chapter 3, David has a nightmare in which he envisions Sophie being executed by her father in a similar manner to other animals that were deemed mutants (10). This alludes to the overzealous nature of the people in Waknuk as well as David’s care for Sophie. It also gives him concrete motivation to keep Sophie's secret mutation to himself.

In each instance, David is shown a vision of either what a world without Tribulation would have been like (Ch. 1), and what the current world, with Tribulation, is (Ch. 3). When David wakes up from his nightmare about Sophie, he is clearly distressed, but isn’t as much so when he wakes up from his dream in Chapter 1.

Nicholas Santos

Posted by: Nicholas Santos at November 15, 2015 02:09 PM

Jonah Robertson
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 400ST
11/16/15
Question:
The word “chrysalid” means a sate into which the larvae of most insects pass before becoming perfect insects. The chrysalid takes in no food and is inactive. In general, the word can mean a sheltered state of growth. IF we use this definition as a description of life in Waknuk, what are the people sheltering themselves from? What is the “perfect state” they are trying to achieve?
Answer:
Waknuk is sheltering its people from any differences in their homogeny. They fear any individuals whom deviate from their accepted sense of normality, to the point that such individuals are effectively condemned to death. The perfect state would be a completely homogenous society in which everyone perfectly follows their accepting conceptions of what a normal individual should be, how they should act, and what they should look like.

Posted by: Jonah Robertson at November 15, 2015 07:53 PM

Rebecca Maldonado
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG 400ST
16 November 2015

Question: Compared to our society, the one that David lives in seems both familiar and unusual. Compare the similarities and differences in terms of speech, climate and geography, laws and customs (e.g. offenses and blasphemies,) farming and other occupations.

Answer: The speech within David’s society has a syntax which suggests that it was a few years before the speech and slang we use today. The language within the text reflects its society. Words and phrases like “mustn’t” and “it did hurt so” (Wyndham 3) give almost a New King James kind of vibe to the narration of the story. They have laws as well, known as commandments and precepts, also giving the story and opening to a sort of biblical interpretation of things. A lot of the language within the text is quite biblical. “ONLY THE IMAGE OF GOD IS MAN” “KEEP PURE THE STOCK OF THE LORD” “REPRODUCTION IS THE ONLY HOLY PRODUCTION” (Wyndham 6).

Posted by: rebecca maldonado at November 16, 2015 11:33 AM

Kristen Collins
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 400ST
16 November 2015

QUESTION: The word “chrysalid” means a state into which the larvae of most insects pass before becoming perfect insects. The chrysalid takes in no food and is inactive. In general, the word can mean a sheltered state of growth. IF we use this definition as a description of life in Waknuk, what are the people sheltering themselves from? What is the “perfect state” they are trying to achieve?

ANSWER: The word “chrysalid” can take on two very important meanings in The Chrysalids: one being from the life in Waknuk, and the other being the life of mutants (specifically the word-though people). If the word were to be come from the definition of “taking in no food and inactivity,” then this is the life in Waknuk. While it is important for the larvae to be inactive in this metamorphic state, the people of Waknuk takes this reasoning too far. Waknuk is a stagnant chrysalid, with the larvae most likely being dead before its birth. The people starve themselves from their own growth, fearing the metamorphic state they could potentially have. Instead of actually leaving the chrysalid, Waknuk never allows itself to come into a second birth. The Waknuk people literally want their “perfect state” to be what it previously was. They are in a mentality where leaving the chrysalid equals mutation from the original, even though the entire purpose of being in the chrysalid is to evolve from the previous state. And while it is a very fragile time and protection should be at the forefront of the mind, Waknuk takes this too far. The “sheltered state of growth” brings about the ‘word-thought’ mutants in the word chrysalid. They are literally protected within their minds and grow slowly through the combined mind-link of other. They need to be in a sheltered environment to grow into adulthood, this particular part being the example with Petra. Unlike the Waknuk, these mutants evolve from the chrysalid. Strangely enough, the word-thought group must not only protect themselves from the outside world, they must also be protected from other mutants, the town of Waknuk, and the very group of word-thought’s as well (Anne).

Posted by: Kristen Collins at November 16, 2015 12:15 PM

Question 3. How does the incident with Sophie (initially and later) suggest why David might be a person who will question things as they are?


Answer: David is a child who is still learning about the world around him and questioning everything, including the values that has has been instilled with. David describes the ways of the world as “puzzling” and believes that the Definition of Man, the doctrine that is forced upon him from birth, might be mistaken.

David has been taught that a blasphemy is a thing to be frightened of, but cannot understand why someone as innocent as Sophie is not considered human and whose very existence is an insult to God.

David lives in a world where tradition is the norm and is seen as an offense to break. He describes his father’s faith as having been “bred into his bones,” by David’s grandfather and that “his principles were his sinews, and both responded to a mind richly stored with examples from the Bible, and from Nicholson's Repentances. In faith father and son were at one.” (6)

The incident at David’s home when he makes a comment wondering if a task would be easier if he had a third hand sends his father into a rage, accusing the boy of expressing dissatisfaction with the form of the body God gave him, which he claims is modeled after God Himself. David is shamed by his family for simply expressing a thought, not necessarily wishing that he was a mutant or outright rejecting his father’s teachings.

Having been brought up in such a strict household where his ability to express freely has been restricted, the compassion he shows for Sophie’s mutation is not surprising. Around Sophie and her family, he is more able to be himself instead of conforming to his father’s extreme prejudice against mutants.

Posted by: Will McDermott at November 16, 2015 12:51 PM

Jahiedy Vinas
ENG 400 ST End of Days
Dr. Hobbs
16 November 2015
Question 11: Suggest why Uncle Axel is concerned about David and his friends. Review details of Waknuk society, its fears and beliefs.
Answer: Uncle Axel is like another Mary for David. He cares for David’s safety and asks David to “make a promise” in keeping his telepathic abilities a secret. He assures David that he will understand how important it is when he gets older. Uncle Axel could have turned David in as a Deviant, and since he did not, David can trust in Uncle Axel. The Waknuk society is weary of people who are different, “Fringes,” or mutants of any kind, whether it be from having some type of supernatural and unexplainable ability or an extra toe, like Sophie. The Fringes are part of the Waknuk’s cautionary tales to kids and are deemed as something anti-Christian, a danger to society. The society of Waknuk is very fundamentally Christian with volumes of the bible carved into wood and leaders of the community, such as David’s Father and Grandfather, are devout religious men with “submissive wives.”

Posted by: Jahiedy Vinas at November 16, 2015 01:29 PM

Isabella Bains
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 400
November 16, 2015

The Chrysalids: Chapter 1-4 Questions

2) What information can you glean about Davidʼs family history? Consider both the mother
and the father.

David’s family history is shady at best. What readers directly know of his family goes as follows. His paternal grandfather, Elias Strorm, cultivated the region of Waknuk. He was a fiercely religious man who broke the “coltish” spirit of his wife, David’s paternal grandmother. The text cites very specifically that David’s unnamed grandmother gave birth to two sons, one of which is David’s father, Joseph, before she died a year after the birth of her second child. The second child, David’s uncle, is never referred to again in these chapters; however, a mutant from the fringes is captured who resembles Joseph Strorm tremendously, ignoring his spider-like, mutant body. David’s brief interaction with this mutant man carries with it a great deal of foreshadowing. David’s father, Joseph Strorm, continues his father’s legacy of blind, unfeeling piety. He is the spiritual leader of the Waknuk region and is constantly on guard for signs of deviation, making David’s ability to communicate through think-shapes highly dangerous.
David’s mother is named Emily and comes from a large family composed of five daughters and two sons. Her eldest sister, Aunt Hannah, was sent away by her husband, presumably because she produced to many deviant children. Her sister Harriet lived fifteen miles away. Her other sister, Elizabeth, has married Uncle Axel, who proves to be a very influential part of David’s life, helping him to conceal his deviation. One of David’s maternal uncles and maternal aunts are unaccounted for; however his Uncle Angus Morton lives on a farm adjacent to David’s family’s farm. Uncle Angus Morton and David’s father are constantly in dispute, but David is very close to Angus’ daughter, David’s cousin, Rosalind. Emily, David’s mother, is described as a dutiful woman.
David’s family of Origin is composed of himself and his older sisters (he is the only male), but he only appears to be close to his sister Mary who looks after him as best she can.

Posted by: Isabella Bains at November 16, 2015 10:14 PM

Q: Even though Uncle Axel does not believe the religious version of the “Tribulation” held by those in Waknuk, he is still puzzled by what did happen and why. What is he trying to tell David about “the quality of mind” (pgs. 80-83) and his (David’s) possible role in the evolution of society? Use details from the text as support.

A: Uncle Axel’s views on the “Tribulation” are mixed. While he does understand the reasoning behind the harsh religious practices of the tow against deviations (as he says that they would not do anyone any true good), he also believes that there is no true reason to kill them, as they wouldn’t do any harm (32). In addition, Uncle Axel describes the “quality of mind” concept as a sort of mutation that makes man different from other animals; he says: “That was the only thing he [man] could usefully develop; it’s the only way open to him—to develop new qualities of mind” (32). In other words, Axel believes that the ability for man to think and construct complex ideas makes man, in and of itself, a mutant. He also uses this metaphor to understand David’s and Rosalind’s telepathic power as an advancement of the “quality of mind” that man naturally has. This alludes to the people of Sealand, who have evolved enough to the point where telepathy is welcomed and used to its fullest potential.

Nicholas Santos

Posted by: Nicholas Santos at November 17, 2015 07:20 PM

2) Why do you think that some parts of the world have been affected differently than others? Develop a scale or a system to help you to rate the parts of the world most adversely affected.

Chapter six of The Chrysalids offers readers the most information of the vague, mysterious lands outside of Labrador. In this chapter, David’s Uncle Axle is telling him about folklore among the sailors regarding the larger world. It appears that the further south west they travel, the more distorted the mutations become. Labrador, for the most part, is largely non-deviational; however, deviations occur increasingly as you move toward the fringes. Once outside of the fringes the badlands are increasingly deviant. Evidence that the badlands worsen in the southwesterly direction is further shown by the correlation between bad harvests and seasons with high southwesterly winds. Today the Northeastern portion of Canada is sometimes referred to as Labrador, so it is my guess that severe nuclear fallout occurred around the Los Angeles area.

I would rate the effects of the hypothesized nuclear fallout on mutation/deviation rates as follows:

0-No deviations (doesn’t appear to exist in the text)
1-Land is cultivated, deviations occur regularly (Waknuk)—there would be subcategories to this section. The book suggests that some areas of Labrador see higher levels of mutations.
2-Fringes (mutations are the norm, conditions are live-able)
3-Badlands (mutations are increasingly distorted, conditions are not live-able)—there would be subcategories to this section based on level of deviation (i.e. size)
4-Blacklands—area that Uncle Axel states nothing grows. Probably the epicenter of nuclear apocalypse.

Posted by: Isabella Bains at November 17, 2015 09:47 PM

Jonah Robertson
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 400ST
11/18/15
Question: In what ways does Uncle Axel’s lesson help explain the fanatic beliefs of the people of Labrador and Waknuk? Are you more sympathetic to them now?
Answer:
Axel’s explanation of the dangers outside of Waknuk in Chapter 6 provides some explanation for the extreme beliefs held by it’s people, but it doesn’t excuse how they treat the “deviants”. Even though there are supposed monstrosities outside of the cities walls, the inhabitants of Waknuk shouldn’t condemn any deviants as monsters themselves, even if they’re perfectly sane and human, like David is. The only aspect of this portion of the tale that might garner some sympathy is when Axel comforts David regarding his abilities, and promises to help him. However, Axel’s good actions cannot redeem the entire population of Waknuk, and they are all still treating any of the “deviations” terribly, and are removing any semblance of humanity from them.

Posted by: Jonah Robertson at November 18, 2015 02:24 AM

Emily Finck
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 400ST: End of Days: The Post-apocalyptic Imagination CA01
18 November 2015


Question: Part Two #10
Describe carefully the exact nature of the gift- uses, limits, and types. At this point, are you inclined to agree with Uncle Axel’s view of its purpose or those of the Waknuk elders? (Before deciding, discuss the possible dangers in any society of such and advancement of human development; e.g. what if five of your classmates had the gift and the rest didnʼt? (Use examples from the text to support your answer).


Answer:
In John Wyndham’s The Chrysalids, the nature of the gift found only in some of the children on Waknuk is something they refer to as “thinking in thought shapes,” or a sort of telepathy (11). The limits of this gift entail only being able to communicate with those who can also think in “thought shapes,” be within a certain mile radius of one another, as well as within the same limits of “Labrador” (Wyndham). As for the different types of the gift, there are two major differences are those who can think in “shapes” and those who can communicate with “sharp” noises over long distances (Petra).


In following the structure of the question, the possible dangers that would arise in our society due to an advancement in only a select few humans would be religious differences (goes against God) as in the novel and mass genocide. Society tends to kill off those who are different and those they do not understand. However, there are also advantages to having certain people with this gift in society as well, such as military and tactical support and aid. Uncle Axel’s viewpoint in the novel coincides with the advantages mentioned above since he explains to David that the “correct version” of society that the elders believe in may not, in fact, be correct (Wyndham 12). Uncle Axel believes that there are many different societies and that they are all acceptable.

Posted by: Emily Finck at November 18, 2015 01:02 PM

Craig Graves
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 400 – Post Apocalyptic Literature – CA01
16 November 2015

The Chrysalids
Question: Part I, #4
According to David, only two books have survived from earlier times: the Bible and Nicolson’s repentances. Read the novel and identify what the major tenants of these two books are. (see pages 12-13)

Answer:
In the community in which David lives, the Bible and Nicolson’s repentances are used to dictate who is considered a proper human and ‘normal.’ According to the Definition of Man, a combined dictation of the Bible and the repentances, anyone who does not fit the mold for a normal human being is “hateful in the sight of God” (Wyndham 14). The people in David’s community are essentially following a bastardization of the teachings found in the Bible because the Bible is supposed to spread the word of God being an all-powerful and all-loving deity. Instead, these people are taking the teachings of a loving God with the idea that only normal or proper humans are worthy of acceptance.

Posted by: Craig Graves at November 18, 2015 01:09 PM

Craig Graves
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 400 – Post Apocalyptic Literature – CA01
18 November 2015

The Chrysalids
Question: Part II, #4
What hints are we given about the origins of the Fringes? Why might Martherʼs journal be upsetting to Mr. Strorm in particular? (Refer to pages 61)

Answer:
According to the journal, the Black Coasts are possibly fatal to explore and this exploration is not acceptable in the eyes of the Right Wing Church Party (Wyndham 61). This journal also says that the Fringes are a generally habitable area, and by extension there are other habitable areas outside of the acceptable world. This would upset Mr. Strorm because he, like many others in the community, do not want to believe that what they know could be wrong. The problem with this is that they are being too close-minded and not accepting how the rest of the world is. For all they know, their idea of a ‘normal’ human could actually be the ‘abnormal’ human.

Posted by: Craig Graves at November 18, 2015 01:10 PM

Jahiedy Vinas
ENG 400ST- End of Days
Dr. Hobbs
18 November 2015

Question 11: Even up to Chapter 11, and despite many tragic events, David and his group are not really active rebels or even dangerous non-conformists. Rather they behave more like normal young people who possess one exceptional gift, that of telepathy. Referring to the events and statements in these chapters, show to what extent you agree with this assessment.
Answer: The assessment of David and his group not really being active rebels or dangerous non-conformists is accurate. The group had never physically gotten together until the scare from Petra upon her encounter with the scary creature that killed her pony. They all exercise precaution in meeting, who they speak to and what they do. They had agreed to not meet up to prevent any suspicion. They do not do anything active that could cause inquiry and the only real case of being suspect came under the situation with Petra where they all met up at the same place almost at the same time. The tragic event of Alan’s murder is due to Uncle Axel, who took the Initiative after six months for the safety of David and the other Deviants. Anne’s suicide is an action on her own, who per Uncle Axel, had already delved into exposing the other Deviants, thus Uncle Axel took action to prevent any further ripple effects from occurring. In a way, the Deviants continue to communicate with each other telepathically and they continue learning how it works while also trying to cope with Petra’s lack of control of her own abilities. It is not possible to ignore, like Anne, thus they accept the truth, learn how it works and stick together as a group to protect each other. They do not take action to create chaos, but take action in keeping the peace and suspicion from each other.

Posted by: Jahiedy Vinas at November 18, 2015 01:29 PM

Kristen Collins
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 400ST
18 November 2015

QUESTION: How many of the cruelties and injustices are due as much to character of the individuals involved as to the absolute need for purification? Remember as old Jacob said, “Mutants used to be burned.” Give examples and explain.

ANSWER: The cruelties and injustice seems to be spit up into four different groups (who do not have a mutation): the sympathizers, the ones who look away, those who are genocidal, and the mob mentalists. The sympathizers do not feel as though the mutants should be purified and are usually outside of the society, not in the Badlands but not in the communities either. Sophie’s family is considered to be sympathizers because they make sure to protect their daughter, even leaving the comforts of society. Those who look away from the mutants seem to have a policy of “don’t see, don’t tell.” They are a group that will not help mutants, and probably still holds distain for them, but will not go all out in persecuting them. Mary is the more stern in her views but she sort of accepts her sister’s decision, and Aunt Harriet, even though her child is a mutant and she still has the views of the community, she makes an exception to the rule for her child. The genocidal group in society feel as though the mutants are not humans and should be completely exterminated. Old Jacob is the prime example with his line, “Mutants used to be burned.” The final group is pretty much the majority of the town population, having a mob mentality of only following the crowd.

Posted by: Kristen Collins at November 18, 2015 01:33 PM

Jahiedy Vinas
ENG 400ST- End of Days
Dr. Hobbs
18 November 2015

Question 11: Even up to Chapter 11, and despite many tragic events, David and his group are not really active rebels or even dangerous non-conformists. Rather they behave more like normal young people who possess one exceptional gift, that of telepathy. Referring to the events and statements in these chapters, show to what extent you agree with this assessment.
Answer: The assessment of David and his group not really being active rebels or dangerous non-conformists is accurate. The group had never physically gotten together until the scare from Petra upon her encounter with the scary creature that killed her pony. They all exercise precaution in meeting, who they speak to and what they do. They had agreed to not meet up to prevent any suspicion. They do not do anything active that could cause inquiry and the only real case of being suspect came under the situation with Petra where they all met up at the same place almost at the same time. The tragic event of Alan’s murder is due to Uncle Axel, who took the Initiative after six months for the safety of David and the other Deviants. Anne’s suicide is an action on her own, who per Uncle Axel, had already delved into exposing the other Deviants, thus Uncle Axel took action to prevent any further ripple effects from occurring. In a way, the Deviants continue to communicate with each other telepathically and they continue learning how it works while also trying to cope with Petra’s lack of control of her own abilities. It is not possible to ignore, like Anne, thus they accept the truth, learn how it works and stick together as a group to protect each other. They do not take action to create chaos, but take action in keeping the peace and suspicion from each other.

Posted by: Jahiedy Vinas at November 18, 2015 01:34 PM

2) In your opinion, what is the most inhumane aspect of the lives the Fringe people have
been doomed to by the laws of Labrador? Would they be better off having been burnt
as in the old days? Focus on Sophie and Spider Man.
I think the most inhumane aspect of the lives that have been inflicted upon the fringe people is not that they have been banished to nearly uninhabitable lands, but that they have been denied the basic right of reproduction. Not only is this a crime against human rights, which doesn’t matter based on their definition as non-humans, but it is also a further perversion of nature. Not only are these individuals mutated, but they are mutilated. This mutilation further removes them from the “image of God” that the inhabitants of Labrador claim to abide by so rigorously. In my opinion, burning the mutants would be preferable to a miserable, pointless life where the even the possibility for new life has been removed. The anguish of Sophie and the Spider Man both stem primarily from an inability to reproduce.

Posted by: Isabella Bains at November 19, 2015 01:20 AM

Emily Finck
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 400ST: End of Days: The Post-apocalyptic Imagination CA01
20 November 2015


Question: Part Three #7
How much of her former humanity has Sophie left? What do you feel about her actions and motives in the final chapters of the novel? (Use examples from the text to support your answer).


Answer:
In John Wyndham’s The Chrysalids considering that Sophie’s capture, sterilization, and banishment to the Fringe after the Waknuk elders found out that she was a deviation she has a considerable amount of humanity left. Despite having to live without the provisions and care of a town, Sophie survives. Sophie’s intentions towards the end of the novel are admirable and commendable, though she throws a small “tantrum” about Rosalind and her ability to conceal her deviation she ends up fighting to protect what she now calls “home” when the men from Waknuk find that David and the others are in the Fringe (Wyndham 72, 76). Sophie’s actions to protect those who took her in after Waknuk abandoned her speaks for her adaptably even in the most grave of situations.

Posted by: Emily Finck at November 19, 2015 09:15 PM

Q: From the information in chapters 12-16, reconstruct what may have happened at Tribulation to various parts of the world. What “good” appears to have come out of destruction and deviation?

A: Throughout “The Chrysalids,” it is hinted at that Tribulation, much like the action religious term of expulsion itself, is what caused the massive destruction that lead to the human race being the way it is now. The people in Waknuk, who believe that Tribulation was an act of God, believe very strongly in the Bibles of the old world. Deviations, since they go against the beliefs of the Bible, must be killed as they believe that mutations such as deviations are what caused the Tribulation in the first place.

It can be assumed that these deviations are not a result of God’s will, but rather a result of some sort of biohazard that could cause mutations like this. Based on the cities portrayed in David’s dreams, as well as the technological advancement of the societies before those in Labrador, it can be assumed that the cities of old simply became far too advanced for their own good. It’s possible that the cause of the “Tribulation” was nuclear warfare of some sort. In this way, the only real “good” is that the threat of nuclear harm was finally put to rest with Tribulation, allowing for humanity to “start fresh” again.

Nicholas Santos

Posted by: Nicholas Santos at November 19, 2015 10:29 PM

Rebecca Maldonado
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG 400ST
20 November 2015

Question: What is the significance of the Sealander’s attitudes towards the slain people? Connect your response to their apparent views of humanity’s future.

Answer: The attitude of the Sealander appears to be that killing is necessary. “’It is not pleasant to kill any creature’ she agreed, ‘but to pretend that one can live without doing so is self- deception’” (Wyndham 80). Humanity seems to be changing and the telepaths seem to be coming out on top. “’the essential quality of live is living; the essential quality of living is change; change is evolution: and we are part of it’”(Wyndham 80). Claiming that those which are static are the enemy of change and therefore the enemy of life. She claims that “ours is the superior variant, and we are only just beginning” (Wyndham 80). All of the dialogue sounds almost foreboding – like her utopia would be a dystopia for someone else not of her kind.

Posted by: rebecca maldonado at November 20, 2015 09:11 AM

Kristen Collins
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 400ST
20 November 2015

QUESTION: In the first few chapters, are the residents of Waknuk getting closer or further away from perfection? There is evidence of both sides, so be sure to have this in your answer.

ANSWER: The Waknuk residents are getting further and further away from perfection rather than closer to it. While it can be seen in some perspective that what they are doing, in secluding themselves and being very isolated, is getting closer to perfection, it is in actuality, a hindrance. Scientifically speaking, if a society continues to be isolated and reproduction only occurs within the same select family lines, genetic mutations will occur (completely ironic, since the Waknuk’s are doing this to make sure mutations do not happen). They are even killing and/or sending off those who have mutations that can be seen as superior adaptation to the environment. By having the desire to kill David and the other, the Waknuk town is essentially killing off their own means of survival. And while it is obvious some forms of mutation are harmful, isolation and not allowing growth is just as harmful.

The concept of ‘perfection’ itself is also a topic of controversial discussion. There is no perfection in humanity, especially with a religious society like Waknuk. From the Bible, humanity cannot be perfect because they have already sinned, being cast out of the Garden of Eden. By trying to attain perfection, an inconceivable state of being, the Waknuk are already being blasphemous. And with the thought process of being in the image of God, there really should not have been a reason to kill of mutated animals and plants since they were not explicitly talked about in the Bible. Also trying to kill David and the others should not have occurred since their mutations were of the mind rather than the body. It is evident throughout the text that the Waknuk were definitely a crumbling society, striving further away from perfection because they were trying to become perfect, an impossible task.

Posted by: Kristen Collins at November 20, 2015 11:17 AM

Craig Graves
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 400 – Post Apocalyptic Literature – CA01
20 November 2015

The Chrysalids
Question: Part III, #4
Why do you think that the men of Waknuk are pursuing the group so far and so desperately?

Answer:
The men of Waknuk are pursuing the group because they are abnormal and therefore blasphemies in the eyes of God. What is more urgent about the group being pursued is that they are not physically abnormal. No one can see their thought-shapes except them, so there is no way to prove if they are actually abnormal or not compared to anyone else in town. Both Sally and Katherine were caught and tortured until they answered the questions they were asked (Wyndham 130-1). It shows that even though there are abnormalities that are not physical, the bigotry of the community will still try to eliminate them.

Posted by: Craig Graves at November 20, 2015 01:30 PM

Although stylistically The Chrysalids does not differ markedly from Wyndham's other novels, the subject matter is rather different. While most are set against a mid-twentieth-century English middle-class background, The Chrysalids is set in a future society which is described in some detail. Unlike most of his novels, it is also a coming-of-age story

Posted by: Adriana Moore at November 26, 2015 10:55 AM

Question 12. What does David's nightmare suggest about his nature and character? What are the dangers he may have to face?

To begin at the end of chapter 3, David's nightmare shows us that he is starting to understand the dark side o his fathers belief in the evil of blasphemy. By going against the norm he blasphemed and his father forces him to repeat like robot, "The norm is the Image of God" By going agasint this he is essentially willing himself to be a mutant. This takes incredible mental strength. David is literally going against what he as been taught because it is not rght for him and he does not believe it. He keeps his lips sut even though it begins to drain his spirits, David thinks that fight with his father at least at this oint would be fruitless. On page 28 of the text, David has his dream and it clearly tells the audience that he beleives the beahvior of the community and esecailly that os his father is complety inappriate. David has many struggles to face as do most mordern day people who beleive soemthing different especailly when they are outnumbered.

Posted by: Andrew Specht at November 29, 2015 06:27 PM

Question 11. At this point (Chapter 11) as the need for decisive action increases, do you feel that Davidʼs human qualities will be a positive or negative factor in his taking on a leadership role within the group?

David has alot of good ideas for the group, but often times it seems as if he lets his emotions control his mindset to a faut. Clearly hen making decisions it is important to take into effect what we are feeling, it seems only human to do so. However at this point in the novel, decisions are needing to be made quickly and not all of them will be good or moral. On page 106 and 107 there is a threatening reddish brown animal that appears out of nowhere, and david is unable to nsling his gun before others have shot the animal twice, once in the hindquarters and another time in the head. To me this is a sign that maybe david is not the leader that they are looking for at the moment. He was not even quick enough to defend himself, had the others not been with him, I beleive that the creature wold have killed him. Granted these are motor skill versus itellect and decision making but for the purposes of this response I think that can be equated appropriately.

Posted by: Andrew Specht at November 29, 2015 06:36 PM

Kristen Collins
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 400ST
30 November 2015

QUESTION: From what you have learned about Sealand, are people like David and Rosalind likely to prosper there? Carefully review the motives for the Sealanderʼs rescue mission; compare their treatment of Petra and Michael.

ANSWER: Sealand is most likely just going to be another society just like Waknuk, especially from the entire conversation between David and the powerful woman from Sealand. The woman explains her society as one where those who have the mind-speak ability are the norm, and those who are not born with the ability wish for the ability. In a way, the mind-speakers are the higher up in society, with society still having classes within themselves for the more powerful like the woman and Petra. These class-like systems definitely show with the interactions between Petra and Michael. The people of Sealand have such a glorified perspective to Petra since she is a powerful being, able to stretch out her abilities and have commanding powers. Sealander’s would stop at nothing to get Petra from the Waknuk society no matter the cost. On the other hand, anyone else who has less power, or is more like the common person of the mind-speakers, they seem to have less of a desire to rescue the mind-speakers left in the Waknuk town. David and Rosalind will most likely not prosper in Sealand, both from their upbringing and also from their lower-class status as a mind-speaker. To have such a difference in behavior, it is definitely shows how the Sealand society and the Waknuk society have no major difference, the only one being who is the normal being – Waknuk being the people looking like the rules, and Sealand being those who can mind-speak.

Posted by: Kristen Collins at November 30, 2015 02:10 PM

Jahiedy Vinas
ENG 400ST: End of Days
Dr. Hobbs
01 December 2015
“The Chrysalids” Part III: To the Fringes and the Brave New World Chapters 12-17
Question 3: “To what degree was Uncle Axel right in his guesses about what happens to the natural world in the fringes and its possible effect on the future? Do you now see Waknuk’s beliefs in a softer light?”

Answer: Uncle Axel was not too far off with his guesses as far as how the natural world would be in the fringes and its effect on the future. Uncle Axel is correct with his guesses as far as how wild nature would be out there with the forestation anatomy being fairly different to what is normally found in the woods of Waknuk and how the communities in the fringes feel they are the new order to restore what the Old people’s values. The man who talks to David in Chapter 14 confirms Uncle Axels guesses about the communities’ attitude of being better than the savages of the Old People. Uncle Axel had guessed that the people in the Fringes are not civilized and that some may be friendly while others are not because of the physical differences. The people in the Fringes do not find anything in the bible that contradicts what “true image” supposed to be, therefore, as Uncle Axel had guessed, no one is certain of the true image. Each group can uphold that value of being the true image. Therefore, each group maintain an individuality that does not reach a consensus within communities of those different to them. If their mutations are basic, there is more understanding between them. However, the more complicated the mutations and complex their society is in the fringes, the more incapable the people are of dealing with differences (Chap 14). As extreme as Waknuk’s belief system was to people with special abilities, their fears are understandable and accurate in seeing them as a danger to their society. The chances of survival for regular humans versus advanced mutated humans whose abilities can inflict death favor those with mutations. If societies with complex mutations have difficulty in creating a balanced and understanding environment towards those who are different, it is even less likely there would be peace with people who don’t have special mutations. The contrast is too great and war would be their only answer.

Posted by: Jahiedy Vinas at December 11, 2015 08:41 AM

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