Sunday, June 15, 2008

The Bean Trees: Chapters 10 & 11

We're reading The Bean Trees and Pigs in Heaven by Barbara Kingsolver.

Click for the posts on Chapter 1, Chapters 2 & 3, Chapters 4 & 5, Chapters 6 & 7 and Chapters 8 & 9.

It´s good to see Lou Ann showing some confidence and leadership, isn´t it? And Taylor appreciating it. Recognizing that it means something when Lou Ann sticks to her guns about what the bird says.

Lou Ann reminds me of people I´ve met or known at different times.

All of us go through our lives in the context of...well, our lives. We take our knowledge and past experiences and go from there. Once in a while I meet someone who is present in the same time and place that I am, but is clearly experiencing an entirely different world than I do. In the cases I´m thinking of specifically, a much smaller world.

That naivetĂ© that Lou Ann displays. The fear of an undefined "something" happening to her or her loved ones (or, in Lou Ann´s case, any number of very clearly defined menacing "somethings") . This kind of outlook comes, I think, from growing up in a fairly insular home or community, where most people look at the world the same way and, perhaps more to the point, where they don´t look too far beyond their own lives.

I´m not doing a very good job of explaining it, but anyway. Lou Ann makes me think of someone I met casually some months ago, and to whom my predominant reaction was, "her world is so small."

Taylor is nearly as naive about some things, but her upbringing and, therefore, her outlook is different. She knows there´s more out there. She´s pragmatic and willing to learn new things. She´s confident.

She´s the one that clears the air with Edna when Lou Ann practically stops talking to her for fear of referencing her blindness.

Next two chapters for next week...


Bob June 15, 2008 1:06 PM  

Well, color me surprised.

1) I had no inkling that the it would be the wisteria in Roosevelt park that would be the Bean Trees (although I know that wisteria has pods post-bloom).
2) Edna is blind. Huh.

Oh, and
3) Lou Ann? Don't go to Montana!!! (but I'm afraid I'm in agreement with Taylor on that)

pidomon June 15, 2008 6:24 PM  

I see Lou Ann going to Montana and Mattie leaving for some reason and Taylor taking over the house and Jesus is Lord Used Tires.

Bob June 15, 2008 7:07 PM  


My previous comment should read "1) I had no inkling that the title would be referring to..."

Anonymous June 16, 2008 10:53 AM  

I think Taylor puts it well when she was talking about growing up surrounded and protected by mountains. Her horizons were close. Life felt protected within those confines. The plains freak her out because the horizons are really far away--her world has expanded. LouAnn's world never did, until now. Clinging to fears that one feels one can control makes that untethered feeling less frightening.

pidomon June 17, 2008 5:51 PM  

why is Christina so smart :(


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