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Oldesq
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16



Everyman wrote:

Oldesq wrote:
C'mon with the level of scientific experience and knowledge Ginny had for procreativity, creating freaks and cross breeding this group never thought of a turkey baster? Is Ginny Hagar to Vivi's Sarah with all the tribes of Israel at stake?



I love you, Oldesq!

Right back at you Everyman!
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Tarri
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16

KxBurns wrote:

Chapter 14: Vivien's Day Out

 

-well, there is plenty of evidence of Ginny's idiosyncrasies to pick apart here (especially in her ransacking of the handbag). Have at it if you wish!  :smileyhappy:

 

Speaking as an almost compulsive organizer, I found that rather enduring :smileywink: .    Almost like people looking in the medicine cabinet in a friend/acquaintances bathroom, which I would never do.  :smileysurprised: 

 

-evidence of Vivi's own pregnancy is a much a mystery to Ginny as it is to us. Any theories?...

I think Vivi is all about fitting in and making people believe that she gave birth would be very important to her.

 

-as far as the surrogacy is concerned, isn't it really odd that Ginny's professed motive for agreeing is "securing that everlasting kinship with Vivi" (p. 144) since they're already kin?

 

I think Ginny yearns for love and acceptance, especially from Vivi. 

 

-Ginny's reaction to getting a whiff of sherry from Vivi again brings up the imagery of a parasite: "The smell unleashes a little remnant of fear and unease that burrows its way out onto the skin of my arms…" (p. 151).

 

Sad, very very sad.

 

 

Chapter 15: In Remembrance of Pauline Abbey Clarke

 

-Maud's assault on Ginny was truly chilling, and Clive's intercession made it no less bizarre -- particularly when viewed through Ginny's eyes in which it has the strange air of a performance. Clive is not nearly as oblivious as Ginny believes, but now the question becomes, how much does Arthur know? What do you think?

 

After reading the chapter before this one, I felt that Arthur knew and probably went home and discussed with Vivi.  How could he not?  What got me is that no one spoke to Ginny about the suspected abuse. 

 

Maud's actions and words made me think that she "had" to get married to Clive.  Not that she didn't love him, but that she got married way too young and had to settle down long before she wanted to be a homebody.  Either that, or because of Ginny's problems, Maud had to give up what she wanted to do and focus on Ginny instead of having fun.   

 

Chapter 16: A Nuclear Test and Titus

 

-Maud dies on Good Friday. Do you think she was sacrificed by Clive to spare Ginny?

 

Yes, although I think Clive just didn't know how to fix the problems and so just checked out of the situation. 

 

-why was Dr. Moyse really called in? What do you think is the source of Vivi's rage and the rift between her and Clive?

 

I wish the reason for calling Dr. Moyse was clearer, I don't understand that aspect.  I do think Vivi thinks that Clive pushed (murdered) Maud, because I cannot imagine that Arthur didn't go home and tell her what was going on in the house.  Even if Clive didn't push Maud, there is no way to convince Vivi that he didn't - too circumstantial.  

 


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Bonnie824
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16

I loved that book too. I actually heard it on CD
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Bonnie824
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16



Oldesq wrote:

 
A really good example of that type of insight is The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime by Mark Haddon who captures someone with pdd so well.



I finally have this quote post figured out- I also love this book and heard it on CD. Another one was Eye Contact, although the POV changed in that book.
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Bonnie824
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16

Somehow in trying to figure out how to quote the post I'm replying to I think I made this whole thread duplicate. Sorry if I did.
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pigwidgeon
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16


kbbg42 wrote:
I found these chapters to be so revealing. I think that when Maude said Ginny ruined her life it was because Ginny was Autistic. In the beginning of the book Ginny had said that Maude used to throw parties and have people over for coffee. That Maude was very sociable and yet as time went on Maude became more isolated. Could the isolation have been due to the village people's aversion to Ginny? It amazes me that Ginny shows no capacity to show her own emotions and has no ability at all to read other peoples emotions. There isn't a possibility that she could be a high functioning Down syndrome? That would explain her covered up baby photo and the aversion of the village people, especially back in the fifties. The rift with Vivian and Clive is easy, Vivian either thinks that Clive killed Maude or that Ginny did and he is covering for her. Vivian cared deeply for her mother and would never forgive him for putting Maude in harms way. As for the surrogacy I feel so sad. If Vivian grew up knowing there was mental retardation in Ginny how could she put her up to carrying her baby and I have to ask myself what will happen to the baby if it ends up being like Ginny. Will Vivian still want it or will she give it back to Ginny?If Ginny is indeed mentally retarded how in the world could Vivian have left her alone for so long and what about Arthur? He seems to know that Ginny is not all there why hasn't he stepped in in all these years? He had to have felt something for Ginny after all those times they spent together. How could the two of them have left her alone for fifty years?




What did Ginny ever do to The Village People? steal the Native American's headdress? the construction worker's orange vest? Did she "go" in the pool at the YMCA? They always seemed like nice young men (Young men, are you listenin' to me? I said, young men, what do you wanna be?) Who knew..... :smileywink:

(Soooo sorry about that! I couldn't resist. I'm laughing and you're all probably rolling your eyes and "tsk-ing" :smileyvery-happy: )
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thewanderingjew
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16

if ginny has aspergers, there is probably a very good chance that clive does as well. often, it is a genetic trait. also, they were both socially inept and shared the same reclusive instincts coupled with a phenomenal ability to concentrate on one thing, moths, with complete devotion to the exclusion of all else, often losing track of time and place.
maud is definitely not "tied too tight" either and her violence may not only be the result of her drinking. her mood swings may indicate a more deep seated mental illness. maud may have cracked under the strain of caring for ginny, a child with special needs, and losing vivi the child she considered a friend, who left home to escape her environment in order to "live" her life.
ginny may have been the recipient of the worst qualities of her parents. actually, if i follow that line of reasoning, maybe ginny was responsible for vivi's fall from the tower and maud's death. perhaps they took place during her moments of "absence", time periods she cannot remember because she is essentially not there, at the time, except in body. perhaps she has the same violent streak or anger that maud exhibits which comes out when she spaces out and goes "somewhere else" to protect herself. perhaps she also protects herself in a physical way at those times. often, they describe serial killers as people who like to torture bugs. killiing the moths the way they did could be thought of as torturing them by some if you take out the scientific research from the process. i think vivi was lucky to escape from bulburrow.
in addition, as has been put forward, if ginny is autistic, then she probably required more care than maud wanted to provide since she preferred the social side of life with parties and friends. ginny could never have been part of that life. finally, when ginny grew up she teamed up with clive to the utter exclusion of maud. at a time when she might have been able to have a happier more social life, she was overcome with loneliness and sadness and disappointment causing her to withdraw into drink which may have only exacerbated her tendency toward violence.
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gosox
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16

A couple of observations about these chapters --
 I found it very ironic when Ginny states that she "was proud that Clive had taught [her] to see the world around [her] without the blind ignorance with which most people must wander it." At that point in the reading, the reader had been led to believe that Clive was rather clueless and the comment brought me up short. 
 
 However, within a few pages of this comment, Maud's beating of Ginny is interrupted by Clive. I found his rescue troubling since he does nothing to dispell the charade that all is well with Maud.
 
On page 171 Ginny mentions Maud and Clive's secret love affair. Could Maud have been pregnant and forced to marry? Would that account for her accusation that Ginny ruined her life?
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detailmuse
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16

Two more:
The Pleasure of My Company, a novella by Steve Martin (OCD or autism, I can't remember which)
Lottery, a novel by Patricia Wood (protagonist has IQ of 76)

Bonnie824 wrote:

Oldesq wrote:
A really good example of that type of insight is The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime by Mark Haddon who captures someone with pdd so well.

Another one was Eye Contact, although the POV changed in that book.


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renhair
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16

I've read a few other posts along these lines, but I have to say that the purse digging was rather entertaining and to some degree expected.  Vivi has kept herself somewhat of a mystery - she stayed gone forever and then comes back without giving any real reason.  Once back, her life in London seems to be somewhat of a secret....she never discusses it.  I'd imagine that Ginny is flat out curious....I would be, no doubt!
 
I thought the Maude attack was horrifying!  I found myself pullng my legs up and hugging them close, as if to ward off the kicks and whacks myself.  It made me wonder what had happened to Maude in the past to make her rage like that.  It seemed that it had to be more than just the alcohol...almost like she had experienced the kind of pain she thought Vivian would feel if she found out they were having an affair.  I don't know...it seemed like she was too angry for the situation.  It also bothered me that it appeared that Maude was lying in wait.  If she was so angry, why didn't she storm into Ginny's room and yell at them both?  Why wait for her to wander down to the kitchen?  Maybe I'm reading more there than there is....
 
 
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renhair
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16

One more thing about the attack.  I thought Clive's entrance was odd...glad to hear others did as well.  It's almost like he had ignored what was going on for so long and he just couldnt' do it anymore.  He had to do something, but he knew Maude well enough to know that he couldn't waltz in there and force her to stop....she could just as easily turn on him.  He had to diffuse the situation and the only way to do that was to wander in as the unaware and absentminded professor.  I think he was protecting Ginny - knowing he hadn't in the past.  That may also be why he helped Maude die.  I don't know that he pushed her, but I think he didn't stop her.  She'd had just enough to drink to make the wrong decision and he didn't pull her away from the door. 
 
Now, that's just me guessing, but.....
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renhair
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16

Is it possible that Vivi for all her glitz is a cold fish and that somehow Arthur found comfort and companionship in Ginny - a very unexpected source.  When they began having sex, she approached it clinically and he approached as a job - very distracted.  The 2nd time, it's almost like he gave the whole thing some thought and decided that he wanted to know Ginny.... I don't know, it's an odd situation, but it just seems that Arthur was looking for something from Ginny that he wasn't getting from Vivi and I don't mean the baby.
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renhair
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16

I think that Maude became less sociable as she drank more and more, and I think she kept drinking more because she felt she had no where to turn.  Her closest companion, Vivi, was out of the house...Clive and Ginny were total wrapped up in their research....no one needed or wanted her.  They didn't even realize when they had gone days without seeing or talking to her.  She turned to the sherry for comfort and it ended up destroying her.


kbbg42 wrote:
I found these chapters to be so revealing. I think that when Maude said Ginny ruined her life it was because Ginny was Autistic. In the beginning of the book Ginny had said that Maude used to throw parties and have people over for coffee. That Maude was very sociable and yet as time went on Maude became more isolated. Could the isolation have been due to the village peoples aversion to Ginny?


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nmccarthy
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16

I wonder if there is some connection or meaning regarding the effect on Ginny when she carressed the silky-feeling material in Vivi's purse. She said, "...I know it can't be silk because it catches on the rough dry skin at the tips of my finers, sending a queer shiver down my back." (pg. 142) Remember in Chapter 8 when Ginny felt Bernard's hand run down the small of her back?
 
Also, the recurrent pattern of the pinprick holes in the material mesmerized her; she could "see the dots as rows or as columns, or diagonals, triangles or squares, and then as shapes with depth, stretching away from me until I've lost perspective entirely." And actually, it was the touching of the fabric that brought her back from the "wildly distorted visual field." Does this relate to symptoms of Asperger's Syndrome as many of you have suspected Ginny suffers?
 
Nancy
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Lildove3
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16

For awhile I did not think the plot was ever going to thicken...but finally it does...poor ginny sure does
take alot of abuse..it was about time clive came to the rescue. Yes I feel sorry for ginny she is trying
to make the best of all these situations...but she seems to be going no where. Wouldn't it be funny is this book was just based upon a dream???
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pheath
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16



renhair wrote:
I've read a few other posts along these lines, but I have to say that the purse digging was rather entertaining and to some degree expected. Vivi has kept herself somewhat of a mystery - she stayed gone forever and then comes back without giving any real reason. Once back, her life in London seems to be somewhat of a secret....she never discusses it. I'd imagine that Ginny is flat out curious....I would be, no doubt!
I thought the Maude attack was horrifying! I found myself pullng my legs up and hugging them close, as if to ward off the kicks and whacks myself. It made me wonder what had happened to Maude in the past to make her rage like that. It seemed that it had to be more than just the alcohol...almost like she had experienced the kind of pain she thought Vivian would feel if she found out they were having an affair. I don't know...it seemed like she was too angry for the situation. It also bothered me that it appeared that Maude was lying in wait. If she was so angry, why didn't she storm into Ginny's room and yell at them both? Why wait for her to wander down to the kitchen? Maybe I'm reading more there than there is....





I think that Maud finding out about Ginny and Arthur was just the straw that broke the camel's back. She already accused Ginny of ruining her life, and this was merely the triggering event that caused the dam to burst.
-Philip
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MLS
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16



renhair wrote:
One more thing about the attack.  I thought Clive's entrance was odd...glad to hear others did as well.  It's almost like he had ignored what was going on for so long and he just couldnt' do it anymore.  He had to do something, but he knew Maude well enough to know that he couldn't waltz in there and force her to stop....she could just as easily turn on him.  He had to diffuse the situation and the only way to do that was to wander in as the unaware and absentminded professor.  I think he was protecting Ginny - knowing he hadn't in the past.  That may also be why he helped Maude die.  I don't know that he pushed her, but I think he didn't stop her.  She'd had just enough to drink to make the wrong decision and he didn't pull her away from the door. 
 
Now, that's just me guessing, but.....


I was wondering if this was almost like a mercy killing or at least if Clive set her up to fall.  Up to this time in the story I haven't noticed any (or at least not many) times of Clive and Maud sharing special times together like they did on their special picnic date.  It was almost like he needed to have this time with her so she could know how much he cared for her.  I think he knew Maud would not have wanted to beat Ginny (and would have controlled herself if not for the alcohol)  I feel he thought Maud's death was the only answer...and after her death his passion for all that he cared about was gone.  I'm thinking he ended his own life by leaving his  home.  Just one theory!  MLS
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KxBurns
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16



ladytoad wrote:
I agree that Vivi probably set up the picture to make it look like she was pregnant, but isn't it interesting that she chose to put that picture in the brooch for posterity? Why not a different picture of her and Arthur, or just Arthur by himself?

I also think Ginny's reaction to the photo is really curious -- she is shocked that she "can't remember this photo ever being taken." Why would sheremember it when she wasn't there? She really has trouble understanding that things happen outside of her own point of view. It's like when you play peekaboo with an infant and he/she thinks you've really disappeared just because they cannot see you; similarly, I feel like Ginny lacks this function of object permanence.
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KxBurns
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16



no4daughter wrote:
I also agree with several others who believe that Clive pushed Maud down the stairs.  His breathing was heavy and he looked at the floor instead of at Ginny.  He again refused to look at Ginny when he told her of his retirement.   I wonder if something happened or was discussed earlier that day when they went out together (were they really on a "picnic" or did they just tell Ginny that) to make Clive want to kill her. 

I think he took Maud out for a picnic because he really did love her but he already knew, after the previous night's incident, that he had to put her and Ginny out of their misery by killing her (Maud). I saw it as a farewell.
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KxBurns
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Re: Chapters 14 through 16



Everyman wrote:
When I read of Clive coming into the kitchen just at the necessary moment to save Ginny from probable serious injury, I hearkened back to Vivi's comment very early in the book that contrary to Ginny's sense the Clive was off in his little world, in fact Clive knew very well what was going in in the house. I can't remember the exact words, but recall the comment.

It seems to me that he does know, but that his commitment to his moth study is so all-consuming that he doesn't bother to act on what he knows until he finds it really necessary to pause his studies to attend to some human interaction issue.

Vivi said "Clive could smell a rat in the pantry..." (p. 83). We also know that he possesses the clinical detachment that would be necessary to carry out a mercy killing...
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