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paula_02912
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22

bentley wrote: "A definite possibility! I think she's emerged as the cannibal caterpillar..."
 
bentley, this is a nice observation...I would agree with you here...she has cannibalized everything...everyone who she was involved with has now been "eaten" by her in some senses...anything that affected her resulted in something happening to the perpetrators of ill-will or those in the periphery, now she is truly alone...the only person who really escapes is Michael...I wonder what his real purpose was in the entire story? Was he the "scientist" in this little experiment, who didn't find the cannibal catepillar before it was too late? He did try to get her out of this house at one point...I know it was so that he could move in, but what was his purpose? Does anyone have any idea? Oh he was her drug dealer too right? lol
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Paula R.

"Adversity causes some people to break, but causes others to break records."

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bookhunter
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22



paula_02912 wrote:
Ann wrote: "Maybe Vivi was adopted from that group of refugees?"
 
 
Ann, this is an interesting question...the only reason I would disagree is the fact that Ginny was shocked to see how much like Maud Vivi looked in her "dotage"....just had to use that word...she felt like...on page 26 she describes her reaction when first seeing Vivi after she got out the car..."I pulled back into the shadows...it strikes me that I have seen a ghost. Maud...I hadn't even tried to imagine what Vivien would look lik but I'd never considered she'd be so like Maud."


Oh, yeah, Paula.  I agree with you now that you pointed that out.  And now that we know what memories of Maud must be like for Ginny that makes that passage even more interesting.
 
Ann, bookhunter
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KxBurns
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22



paula_02912 wrote:
bentley wrote: "A definite possibility! I think she's emerged as the cannibal caterpillar..."
 
bentley, this is a nice observation...I would agree with you here...she has cannibalized everything...everyone who she was involved with has now been "eaten" by her in some senses...anything that affected her resulted in something happening to the perpetrators of ill-will or those in the periphery, now she is truly alone...the only person who really escapes is Michael...I wonder what his real purpose was in the entire story? Was he the "scientist" in this little experiment, who didn't find the cannibal catepillar before it was too late? He did try to get her out of this house at one point...I know it was so that he could move in, but what was his purpose? Does anyone have any idea? Oh he was her drug dealer too right? lol


Actually, that was me :smileyhappy:
 
And we'll definitely have more discussion of the whole cannibal caterpillar metaphor in the next chapters, as I think it's a topic that informs the whole book (not a spoiler! I just mean b/c the next chapters are our last).
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jmcauliffe
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22

I have only one conclusion about why Ginny felt she had to kill Vivien.  Throughout the entire book, she would describe events with her mother and also with others as if she was not important.   It was as if she existed as ane extension of Vivien, but she was often overlooked.   She spent so much time and effort trying to be important, to be noticed.   Her recollection of her mother's drinking habits and her hiding it all from everybody else we can see how she felt important.  She has spent so much time remembering things in a way that have made her feel important, that she had a grand purpose beyond just being whatever is left behind.   
Then Vivien came back and shattered all of Ginny's illusions of importance.    Ginny finds out Vivien knew about her mother's drunkenness, among other things.   Her whole equilibrium is thrown off when she realizes that she is not the "important" person she thought she was for so long.   Thus, she felt she had to get rid of the thing that was throwing her out of place, the person that was trying to keep her from being important.    Her desire to be important overrode every other emotion, thus disallowing Ginny from feeling any sorrow for what she did.   She got rid of Vivien, thus putting herself back at the top of the ladder, the most important person.   
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KxBurns
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22



jmcauliffe wrote:
I have only one conclusion about why Ginny felt she had to kill Vivien.  Throughout the entire book, she would describe events with her mother and also with others as if she was not important.   It was as if she existed as ane extension of Vivien, but she was often overlooked.   She spent so much time and effort trying to be important, to be noticed.   Her recollection of her mother's drinking habits and her hiding it all from everybody else we can see how she felt important.  She has spent so much time remembering things in a way that have made her feel important, that she had a grand purpose beyond just being whatever is left behind.   
Then Vivien came back and shattered all of Ginny's illusions of importance.    Ginny finds out Vivien knew about her mother's drunkenness, among other things.   Her whole equilibrium is thrown off when she realizes that she is not the "important" person she thought she was for so long.   Thus, she felt she had to get rid of the thing that was throwing her out of place, the person that was trying to keep her from being important.    Her desire to be important overrode every other emotion, thus disallowing Ginny from feeling any sorrow for what she did.   She got rid of Vivien, thus putting herself back at the top of the ladder, the most important person.   


I agree with you completely. As steward of Maud's secret, Ginny was for once closer to her mother than Vivi. In a way, she probably felt like, as close as Maud and Vivi were, she was the one who truly knew Maud, not Vivi. But then Vivi comes along and takes that from her.
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22

I think the clocks' displays of different times are related to the narrative structure. Ginny, as a narrator, is all about time: in the very first sentence of the book, she informs the reader both the time (1:50) and the amount of time she's been waiting for her sister (since 1:30, or 20 minutes). She reflects: "When you live by yourself in a house that you very rarely leave and is even more rarely visited, it's essential that you don't lose track of time" (4). This need to control time appears urgently in the structure of Ginny's narration. As she chooses to reveal increasing chunks of the family backstory in conjunction with telling of Vivi's visit, she's forcing her reader to experience her past on her terms only. The loss of control of time, in my experience, surfaces two ways in the narrative: first, in the way that the clocks show different times during Sunday night/Monday morning, and second (and more importantly, in my mind) in the way that the reader comes to realize that Ginny is an unreliable narrator, and that the reader has to reconstruct the story instead of simply trusting Ginny's account.



bookhunter wrote:
And why are all the clocks no longer synchronized? Do you think that in her disjointed state she has zoned out and fiddled with the clocks as a manifestation of her mind? Her mind is no longer neat and orderly so she unknowingly adjusts the clocks to reflect that?



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dumlao_n
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22

I was just as confused on Ginny killing Vivien. Was Ginny feeling threated by something Vivien did or didn't do in the past? Finding out Ginny poisoned Vivien the night before and reading the "About Monday" chapter was chilling.

Do you think Vivien knew her sister poisoned her? Do you have any theory's on why she was poisoned?
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22

I agree with you.There is truly an unfolding-and that is in part where I believe Ginny is now totally insane. I think she went over the edge when Vivi started bringing up the past, which was different from what she told herself all these years and it did her in. When you add in her obvious life long psychological/emotional problem it just made her break apart. I also loved this chapter and the structure of it. The language describing Ginny is great. You asked a good question about what kind of moth did she emerge as-what do think?

nmccarthy wrote:


KxBurns wrote:

Chapter 20: About Monday

 

-I really like the way this chapter is structured. We find out rather abruptly that Ginny went through with the poisoning and Vivien is dead. But then we are plunged into doubt and uncertainty, along with Ginny, due to the time confusion. Rather than any sign of remorse, Ginny feels "a new life force coursing through my body, ousting years of lethargy and inertia...waking me from slumber, showing me the world more clearly' (p. 241). How does her physical state reflect her mental state in this chapter?

 

Message Edited by KxBurns on 03-12-2008 12:37 PM


Ginny has completed her metamorphosis; she has emerged from her chrysalis "It's the first warm day of spring. The early light, which has just begun to pour through the window, is bright and hopeful". pg. 241-242
 
As for the significance of the physical metamorphosis, "My feet and ankles are set solid as if, today, they have been carved together from a single block of wood." I love the description of knuckles on her crippled, clenched hands loosening up with the heat of the water and the toes of her hoof-like, single-toed goat separating as the paper is inserted between them. She is unfolding.
 
Very clever. But what kind of moth did she emerge as?
Nancy
 

 



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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22

I think the clocks are off as a symbol  that Ginny is "off". I believe she changed the time on the clocks as a reflection of that. I also think she killed Vivi to "kill" the past Vivi discussed with her (the reality of the past) which I believe Ginny could not cope with. Her mind is (as you said) "no longer neat and orderly."

pheath wrote:


bookhunter wrote:
And why are all the clocks no longer synchronized? Do you think that in her disjointed state she has zoned out and fiddled with the clocks as a manifestation of her mind? Her mind is no longer neat and orderly so she unknowingly adjusts the clocks to reflect that?
Ann, bookhunter





No one other than Ginny mentions them. Perhaps some of them merely exist in Ginny's mind and have been thrown off kilter by the shock of the previous days events.


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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22

unfortunatly while reading this book im in the middle of moving for MA to VA so i havent been able to enjoy this book as much as i possibly could. (reason why i havent posted on the other chapters except the first few which i did the day before moving day) i really dont have time to post to them all but i really wanted to post on these chapters seeing that at this point in the book it takes a huge turn and i love books that do the unexpected.
 
Chapter 20:
i really wasnt expecting ginny to go as far as killing her own sister but throughout this whole book i knew something was not mentally right about her. and when she said that it was unpremeditated but preordained by fate you know something is not right in the head. what i would like to know is what pushed her so far over the edge to resort to killing viv. yeah viv destroyed her lovely memories but that isnt any reason to kill.
 
i believe that they way she was raised as a child had a lot affect on her mental state and thats why when she keeps telling herself that shes too levelheaded or not superstitious enough to have such feelings or do such things. i feel she never had the freedom to.
 
Chapter 21:
i found that her being able to kill insects so easily without any feeling did help with her being able to kill viv without second guessing because to ginny its just another living thing.
 
i agree with Ginny's characterization of herself on page 253 (last paragraph), continuing onto p. 254. because she did sacrifice her life to become what she was forced to be a lepidopterapist. and she she sacrficed to take care of her mom and hide that she was a drunk instead of living her own life
 
i also agree with how she loves her sister but hates her just as much. i have a few relationships like that in my life...including my relationship with my mom (long story and to personal to explain... but shes my mom and i will always love her because there are somedays she is her old self... the person i remember when i was a child)
 
Chapter 22:
i was very suprised on how calm and together ginny was when she answered the door but thats what happens when your not in the right state of mind i guess. as for the state of the house im guessing the knew something was off about ginny and figured thats why her sister came home to live with her...to take care of her.
 
i dont think in general Ginny's obsession with time is going to lead to her downfall i just think that her mental state will cause it. the obsession is just something making her tick....just a symtom.
 
 
 
Caitlin
"Literature is my Utopia. Here I am not disenfranchised. No barrier of the senses shuts me out from the sweet, gracious discourses of my book friends. They talk to me without embarrassment or awkwardness."
Helen Keller (1880 - 1968)
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Everyman
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22

Including eating all the memories of Maud in the house by selling off everything that was of her influence (except the bed, which was Clive's too).

paula_02912 wrote:
bentley wrote: "A definite possibility! I think she's emerged as the cannibal caterpillar..."
bentley, this is a nice observation...I would agree with you here...she has cannibalized everything...everyone who she was involved with has now been "eaten" by her in some senses...anything that affected her resulted in something happening to the perpetrators of ill-will or those in the periphery, now she is truly alone...the only person who really escapes is Michael...I wonder what his real purpose was in the entire story? Was he the "scientist" in this little experiment, who didn't find the cannibal catepillar before it was too late? He did try to get her out of this house at one point...I know it was so that he could move in, but what was his purpose? Does anyone have any idea? Oh he was her drug dealer too right? lol



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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22



paula_02912 wrote:
bentley wrote: "A definite possibility! I think she's emerged as the cannibal caterpillar..."
 
bentley, this is a nice observation...I would agree with you here...she has cannibalized everything...everyone who she was involved with has now been "eaten" by her in some senses...anything that affected her resulted in something happening to the perpetrators of ill-will or those in the periphery, now she is truly alone

AGREE AGREE AGREE.  Hi all, had the flu, couldn't really participate much the past week.  When I finished the book (the day I received it)  I said that she was the cannibal.  I don't have the book in front of me. but wasn't there a chapter when Arther kept saying how can you tell?  and they all said, you just can.  Well they all could tell, couldn't they?
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SweetReaderMA
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22

Chapter 20

It really shocked me that Ginny would murder her sister so now it makes me rethink that maybe she did do something like push her off the bell tower. I think maybe it is her mental state that reflects her physical state because for once she is initiating something in her life so she feels a bit more free therefore giving her new life and more energy physically.

I will reiterate that because of her intentionally killing her sister I think it is a cold blooded murderer making excuses and that she wasn't telling us the right story about the bell tower.

Chapter 22

What more of a downfall can Ginny have. she is already locked up.
These are not books, lumps of lifeless paper, but minds alive on the shelves. From each of them goes out its own voice... and just as the touch of a button on our set will fill the room with music, so by taking down one of these volumes and opening it, one can call into range the voice of a man far distant in time and space, and hear him speaking to us, mind to mind, heart to heart. ~Gilbert Highet
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Tarri
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22

Maybe the clocks were all wrong because Vivi had been going around setting them to different times to drive Ginny over the edge.
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22



Bentley wrote:


I think you might mean that Vivien was going to meet Eileen that day. I think that Vivien was setting up Ginny in order to get her moved out of the house and into a home or institution. If she got everyone to think that Ginny was mad, it would be a lot easier. I think she told Eileen everything; all of her warped thinking and probably made Ginny out to be this demented monster. She probably told her that if I do not show up; call the police right away because I will be dead or in trouble. She probably told Eileen that Ginny had pushed her as a young girl, that possibly she or her father had killed Maud and that Ginny was capable of murder or worse. I don't think that she had the strength to call Eileen; I think it was set up in advance. Why would someone call the police if someone did not show and expect the worse unless she had been told something by Vivian. I know that if let us say a family member did not appear for dinner; I would try to call them and see what had happened but would not call the police all in distress right away.

Bentley, I agree with you except Ginny didn't have a phone and I'm sure she didn't know Vivi's cell phone was with her.  Since Ginny wouldn't go into Vivi's room, she wouldn't answer the phone.  I'm sure you're right that Vivi had told Eileen everything because Vivi was paranoid and had every right to be. 
LMD

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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22



bookhunter wrote:
I really want to understand WHY Ginny kills Vivi.  Ginny has her own "ginny logic" about everything, so I think she must have a "reason" for killing Vivi.
 
She is thrown off kilter by Vivi's seemingly ignoring the baby's grave.  In Ginny's mind, Vivi is SUPPOSED to mourn the baby because it was HER baby.
 
She is further thrown off by Vivi saying that Clive killed Maud.  This upsets Ginny's memory of what happened.  Further, Vivi suggests that Ginny had some fault in Maud's death by not telling the police what she had seen.
 
Because Ginny requires a strict order and structure in her thoughts and actions, she rids her life of anything that interferes with that.  She has shut off rooms, sold all the "clutter" in the house.
 
So killing Vivi is ridding herself of something that upsets her orderly life.  And like in the quote that Thayer pointed out, as a scientist she rises above instinct and emotion.
 
Does that make sense to you all (in "ginny logic", at least!)"
 
Ann, bookhunter


Ann,
 
It makes perfect sense... "Ginny Logic"  I think that Vivi finally represented disorder because Vivi is bringing up events that make Ginny's order completely disorderly and Vivi had to go according to Ginny.  I find her "coldness" toward living beings rather unnerving and I think that Maud may have been referring to that as well with all of the "normal" comments. 
 
 
 

 
LMD

- if I ever go looking for my heart's desire again, I won't look any further than my own back yard. Because if it isn't there, I never really lost it to begin with! - Dorothy - Wizard of OZ
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thefamilymanager
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22



Everyman wrote:
I found echoes of both Hamlet and Macbeth in these chapters.

Hamlet in "the time is out of joint:" surely her time has become out of joint (Why do we think all the clocks and watches suddenly went off? Something supernatural? Or she is just reading them all wrong? This wasn't explained at all, and doesn't make sense to me.)

And Macbeth in the knocking at the gate, an interruption in the horror of murder for an almost casually ordinary episode.

WOW! What a Great comparison!
 
Lisa
 

 
LMD

- if I ever go looking for my heart's desire again, I won't look any further than my own back yard. Because if it isn't there, I never really lost it to begin with! - Dorothy - Wizard of OZ
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kbbg42
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22

jmcauliffe wrote;
 
I have only one conclusion about why Ginny felt she had to kill Vivien.  Throughout the entire book, she would describe events with her mother and also with others as if she was not important.   It was as if she existed as ane extension of Vivien, but she was often overlooked.   She spent so much time and effort trying to be important, to be noticed.   Her recollection of her mother's drinking habits and her hiding it all from everybody else we can see how she felt important.  She has spent so much time remembering things in a way that have made her feel important, that she had a grand purpose beyond just being whatever is left behind.   
Then Vivien came back and shattered all of Ginny's illusions of importance.    Ginny finds out Vivien knew about her mother's drunkenness, among other things.   Her whole equilibrium is thrown off when she realizes that she is not the "important" person she thought she was for so long.   Thus, she felt she had to get rid of the thing that was throwing her out of place, the person that was trying to keep her from being important.    Her desire to be important overrode every other emotion, thus disallowing Ginny from feeling any sorrow for what she did.   She got rid of Vivien, thus putting herself back at the top of the ladder, the most important person.   
03-13-2008 12:34 PM

I have to agree with your observations. I felt the same way while i was reading this. Spot on!
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bentley
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22


thefamilymanager wrote:


Bentley wrote:


I think you might mean that Vivien was going to meet Eileen that day. I think that Vivien was setting up Ginny in order to get her moved out of the house and into a home or institution. If she got everyone to think that Ginny was mad, it would be a lot easier. I think she told Eileen everything; all of her warped thinking and probably made Ginny out to be this demented monster. She probably told her that if I do not show up; call the police right away because I will be dead or in trouble. She probably told Eileen that Ginny had pushed her as a young girl, that possibly she or her father had killed Maud and that Ginny was capable of murder or worse. I don't think that she had the strength to call Eileen; I think it was set up in advance. Why would someone call the police if someone did not show and expect the worse unless she had been told something by Vivian. I know that if let us say a family member did not appear for dinner; I would try to call them and see what had happened but would not call the police all in distress right away.

Bentley, I agree with you except Ginny didn't have a phone and I'm sure she didn't know Vivi's cell phone was with her.  Since Ginny wouldn't go into Vivi's room, she wouldn't answer the phone.  I'm sure you're right that Vivi had told Eileen everything because Vivi was paranoid and had every right to be. 





I indicated that Vivian told Eileen everything during the previous meeting (more than likely at Eileen's home) and they planned to get together..Eileen was already tipped off that if she did not show up to expect that something horrible had happened to her at the hands of her sister. I never mentioned any phones except in the personal example that I used. However, we know that Eileen called/contacted the police; who knows she may have tried Vivian's cell but got no answer. Anyways, Eileen's fears were realized. It is like an Alfred Hitchcock movie like Psycho or one of his other many scary films.
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Re: Monday: Chapters 20 through 22




paula_02912 wrote:
bentley wrote: "A definite possibility! I think she's emerged as the cannibal caterpillar..."


We can see more and more the connection between moths and Ginny.  But she could not have "emerged as the cannibal caterpillar."  She went through the cannibal caterpillar stage for a while, then she spent years cocooned in the pupal stage inside her house.  During that time she was undergoing metamorphosis.  She emerged like the moth.  Science does not know what triggers this final emergence, except that it is the right time, the process having been completed. Perhaps Vivi was the trigger that set the final emotional metamorphosis in motion by revealing all the things she did about the past.
 
Another thing that I noted and wonder as to its significance is why Ginny says, "I wonder vaguely, as she gulps thankfully at the water . . . I might not now have it in me to kill my sister at seventy." (p.257) I thought they were both fifty-something.  Could it possibly be that Vivi had really been living there for more than 10 years at the time of the final chapters and Ginny's time warp is a result of undergoing that final metamorphosis during all that time? 
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