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SleightGirl
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19



 
I don't think she has panic attacks, or agoraphobia.  She has been outside before, and been to conferences with Clive.  I think it is the social interaction and social cues she has problems with.
 
Ginny only does what Ginny is TOLD to do.  Ginny only feels what Ginny is TOLD to feel.  She doesn't continue Clive's work because she really can't.  She was just his assistant.  She makes up things to tell him on the few times she goes to visit.
 
I think she doesn't believe in God because Clive didn't.  I am assuming that, based on his comments at the conference--arguing that we are only the sum of our chemical parts or something like that.  If someone along the way had taken her to church and told her to believe in God, she would have.  She spent all her time with clive, so he was the greatest influence on her thinking.
 
Ann, bookhunter



Ooooh, I totally see your point, and I agree.
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SleightGirl
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19



Everyman wrote:


KxBurns wrote:


renhair wrote:
My exact question when I read that passage. It's possible that she's someone from their youth. Vivi does say something about Eileen living in the house that her mother had. Nonetheless, she kind of came out of nowhere and there didn't seem to be any real framework or purpose...

Everyman wrote:
Who is Eileen anyhow, and did she show up earlier in the story and I missed it? How does Vivi know her after nearly fifty years away from the house?




I think she's just a friend Vivi made at the pub...



Did I miss a pub visit? When did this happen?


I think it was when she came home afterward smelling like Sherry.
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bentley
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19

[ Edited ]
I think what would concern me the most if I were Ginny is how and why her name is being mentioned in church. Was this her sister's doing; most likely and why? I am wondering if she came back to take over the house and institutionalize Ginny; thereby stealing the house from Ginny and being in charge.

So far no reason has been given by Vivian.

And why invite this Eileen to the house without consulting Ginny who had lived in that house for quite some time alone. I think this was another attempt by Vivian to take over and usurp Ginny's authority.

And did Vivian see Ginny spying or not? I wasn't sure if in fact she had and just tried to ignore her out of spitefulness.

As far as the ants passage, I think I did not appreciate it as much because there had been too much about insects in the book to my liking.

Message Edited by bentley on 03-12-2008 12:29 PM
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Tarri
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19

Although I have questioned this throughout the book, these chapters really make me wonder why Vivi is home.  Did she come back to make everyone aware of Ginny's mental illness so that Ginny is institutionalized and Vivi can sell the home?  Ginny said that she has had offers on the property, it stands to reason that Vivi would be approached also.   Did she come back to push Ginny over the edge?   Why else would she invite Eileen to the house?   Does Vivi love Ginny or hate her? 
 
 
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bentley
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19


Everyman wrote:


KxBurns wrote:


renhair wrote:
My exact question when I read that passage. It's possible that she's someone from their youth. Vivi does say something about Eileen living in the house that her mother had. Nonetheless, she kind of came out of nowhere and there didn't seem to be any real framework or purpose...

Everyman wrote:
Who is Eileen anyhow, and did she show up earlier in the story and I missed it? How does Vivi know her after nearly fifty years away from the house?




I think she's just a friend Vivi made at the pub...



Did I miss a pub visit? When did this happen?




I did not see it as a pub visit either..maybe she was drinking at Eileen's house..whoever that happens to be (I did not see a mention of a friend Eileen from childhood). And why does this strange woman Eileen get invited to the house by Vivian without so much as consulting ahead of time to ask if Ginny would mind. I think it was a way to show off Ginny and say..see what she has become. Possibly take over the house was her plan; I think she was shocked actually to see all of the furnishings gone; maybe she thought of selling them off herself and her sister had already done it.
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bentley
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19


KxBurns wrote:


bookhunter wrote:
Do you think Vivi cares? 
 
What do you think are Vivi's overall feelings towards Ginny?  She said Maud and Clive tried to protect her from the truth, but then she runs off the social worker who DOES seem to want to acknowledge that Ginny may need some assistance.  I can't figure her out.
 
Ann, bookhunter


I think Vivi is dealing with warring emotions. On the one hand, I think she cares about Ginny and genuinely feels the instinct to protect her. At this point in the book, I'm starting to assume that the family never knew for sure what was wrong with Ginny so the desire to protect her from the prying of someone from Social Services makes sense to me.
 
On the other hand, her frustration with Ginny's condition might be understandable if you figure that she does not have a good understanding of her sister's "peculiarities" and might very well just chalk Ginny's oddness up to a willful refusal to participate fully in the world. I mean, both women were raised in this dysfunctional family.
 
Her suggestion that Ginny take a share of the blame for Maud's death is pretty strange, though. I can only interpret it as the result of a lifelong resentment toward Ginny for what Vivi probably perceived as getting away with everything. We still don't know why they got kicked out of school or how much Viv knows about Ginny and Arthur's attachment to each other... I see lots of places for resentment to fester!   





I do not see Vivian as loving Ginny at all; at least not on this last visit. I think she is following the course that her mother Maude did. If she was trying to protect her; she would not be having her name called out in church to be prayed for. Whatever ailment Ginny had she has had this since birth (it was not something new). I think it was a set-up of Ginny in order to take over the estate (sad as that might seem). Maybe she always thought that Ginny had pushed her and that she lost the chance of having a baby twice (because of Ginny and what unfortunately happened to Samuel). Maybe she also blames Ginny for the breakup of her marriage to Arthur and the fact that he had a connection with Ginny that he did not have with her. Maybe she resented what happened to her mother and thought Ginny did it and that Clive knew (even though I think Clive was the one to carry this out). I think she thought that the only connection that she had in the house had to do with Maud (and their laughter and conversations). She was in fact looking for some belongings of Maud (anything). Being the so called normal child, maybe she had built up a life time of resentment at the specialness that was Ginny and all of this resentment over the years had built up to a delusional hate exacerbated by the drinking. As you recall, Maud had resentment towards Ginny saying how she had given up her life for her (all of which came out for the first time as a drinker).
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jodell7
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19

I totally agree with you.  I felt like the reason Dr. Moyse was seeing Ginny as a child is because her mother blamed her for Vivi's fall.  She seemed normal then.  However, as the story progresses, we are made to believe Ginny really does have some mental problems.  I can't put my finger on it though.  her character seems very foggy to me.  I am trying to understand the compulsion with time and how it ties into the story and I just don't get it.  But it is definitely important.

Everyman wrote:


Tarri wrote:
These three chapters just made me sad. Sad for Ginny who lost her entire family in just a short time ...

Is it any wonder that she retreated into the house never to emerge?


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Oldesq
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19

Wonder what significance leaves have in this section:  In the churchyard scene with the bulbous interloper, the red ants are "heaving neatly cut pieces of leaf" and staving off their own demise, (190-191) shortly afterward on her way home Ginny chases a blackbird only to discover that it is a leaf and the realization that she has mistaken the leaf for a blackbird is devastating (195) and Ginny is so very desperate to catch hold of the leaflets :smileywink: brought by the bobble-hat woman (213).
 
In trying to suss out the meaning I remembered the passage on p. 9 where Ginny describes how their lives revolved around the life cycle of the moth:
 
[E]ndless hours of pupae digging in the autumn; moss gathering in the winter, spring evenings spent dusking and sallowing; and long summer nights light-trapping and sugaring in secret glades and forgotten wastelands.  But spring was the busiest time, the time of emergence, as Clive called [it], when our captive breeders would emerge from their winter cocoons in our attic rooms and the mating season would start."
There are many passages in the novel that refer to time, time periods, seasons, cycles (life, religious, seasonal).  Ginny (and I think Maud) was certainly a captive breeder.  Is Ms. Adams trying to make the reunion a mini cycle.  In Ginny's memories there are certainly parallels with the Stag beetle on page 147 (during sex with Arthur) that once the mating is complete all the rest is baggage and the fearsome armor that is erected is a useless encumbrance and doesn't defeat the "inequity of life" or the "immorality of nature" in the end.  (191). 
 
And Ginny thinks Eileen sucks ("I'm amazed a frail body like hers holds such a powerful suck").  (201)
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pheath
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19



bookhunter wrote:


pheath wrote:
Ok, here's a theory. Vivi initially suspected Ginny of being the one to push Maud. Could it be that she does this because Ginny actually did push her off of the bell tower? Could it further be the case that Vivi has returned now for the purpose of bringing Ginny's world crashing down with the truth out of revenge for the childhood "crime"? I'm not 100% sold on this, but I thought it would be interesting to put out for discussion.


We know that Ginny tunes out the world at times and "plays statues" so it could be that she pushed Vivi without remembering it. But it seems to me that everything Ginny has done has followed some sort of "ginny" version of logic. If that is so, why would she have pushed Vivi off the bell tower?
Ann, bookhunter





That's an interesting question, but I would say that "ginny" logic probably wasn't developed at that stage of her life.
-Philip
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jodell7
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19

I also have a lot of unanswered questions.  It seems that the only thing that is really clear is the moth scientific process, which gives me the creeps.  I don't care to read or know about it.  I don't think there is enough clarity in the story.  everything is left to your imagination and we are not sure who's facts are legit and who's are made up.  I just want to finish the book to get answers, not out of enjoyment of the story.

kmensing wrote:
"""I wonder whether we'll ever find out"""
 
I'm actually keeping track---I have about a dozen unanswered questions so far.  I'm really holding out hope that they're all answered before the end of the story.



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bentley
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19



Oldesq wrote:
Wonder what significance leaves have in this section:  In the churchyard scene with the bulbous interloper, the red ants are "heaving neatly cut pieces of leaf" and staving off their own demise, (190-191) shortly afterward on her way home Ginny chases a blackbird only to discover that it is a leaf and the realization that she has mistaken the leaf for a blackbird is devastating (195) and Ginny is so very desperate to catch hold of the leaflets :smileywink: brought by the bobble-hat woman (213).
 
In trying to suss out the meaning I remembered the passage on p. 9 where Ginny describes how their lives revolved around the life cycle of the moth:
 
[E]ndless hours of pupae digging in the autumn; moss gathering in the winter, spring evenings spent dusking and sallowing; and long summer nights light-trapping and sugaring in secret glades and forgotten wastelands.  But spring was the busiest time, the time of emergence, as Clive called [it], when our captive breeders would emerge from their winter cocoons in our attic rooms and the mating season would start."
There are many passages in the novel that refer to time, time periods, seasons, cycles (life, religious, seasonal).  Ginny (and I think Maud) was certainly a captive breeder.  Is Ms. Adams trying to make the reunion a mini cycle.  In Ginny's memories there are certainly parallels with the Stag beetle on page 147 (during sex with Arthur) that once the mating is complete all the rest is baggage and the fearsome armor that is erected is a useless encumbrance and doesn't defeat the "inequity of life" or the "immorality of nature" in the end.  (191). 
 
And Ginny thinks Eileen sucks ("I'm amazed a frail body like hers holds such a powerful suck").  (201)





Very interesting; the last part about Eileen was hilarious. I didn't like her much either so maybe Ginny had a point.
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lcnh1
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19



detailmuse wrote:
It's the next morning at the beginning of Ch.17 -- am I the only reader who's disappointed that we didn't see anything of the sisters together through Saturday evening? They must have eaten, they must have chatted. The novel's "frame" of reunited sisters seems to be just a facade for telling the family backstory. :smileymad:



I would have liked to see what happened Saturday evening.  When the book jumped to Sunday morning I felt like I missed something.
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bentley
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19



lcnh1 wrote:


detailmuse wrote:
It's the next morning at the beginning of Ch.17 -- am I the only reader who's disappointed that we didn't see anything of the sisters together through Saturday evening? They must have eaten, they must have chatted. The novel's "frame" of reunited sisters seems to be just a facade for telling the family backstory. :smileymad:



I would have liked to see what happened Saturday evening.  When the book jumped to Sunday morning I felt like I missed something.





I think we all did.
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lcnh1
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19

I think Vivi did forget about the baby.  She certainly did not care about him.  She walked right past his grave as if he were nothing.  I think Vivi used Ginny to get what she wanted - a child - so that she could have the "perfect" family that she wanted, not the family that she had.  When things didn't turn out the way she wanted them to, she just moved on with her life and forgot about everyone and everything related to her past.  
 
Vivi in these chapters seems to be very selfish, thinking only of herself.   I don't know what her plan or purpose was in coming home. 

Deenow wrote:
KxBurns wrote:

Chapter 17: A Prayer

- Do you believe Vivi really forgot about her baby, and if so, why?

No, I don't think Vivi forgot about the baby, but I do think she purposely walked past his grave. I believe that once the baby was born imperfect, Vivi simply wrote him off. That is why she did not want to hold the   "purple baby". I also believe that after Ginny could no longer help her, she wrote her off too. I also believe the only reason Vivi returned was to try and make Ginny see that her whole life has been a lie. Ginny was never a famous lepodoptrist. She has never published anything.She didn't publish anything with Clive, and we know she didn't publish anything after Clive left. Ginny never refers to any of her studies. Only Clive's. She was simply led to believe she was doing something to have a purpose. This is why Maude became upset with her. Ginny had a bond with Clive that Maude could never share. When Clive and Ginny do their "studies", it makes Maude feel like Ginny has stolen Clive away. And Maude knows that Ginny will never leave.




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KxBurns
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19



bentley wrote:
I do not see Vivian as loving Ginny at all; at least not on this last visit. I think she is following the course that her mother Maude did. If she was trying to protect her; she would not be having her name called out in church to be prayed for. Whatever ailment Ginny had she has had this since birth (it was not something new). I think it was a set-up of Ginny in order to take over the estate (sad as that might seem). Maybe she always thought that Ginny had pushed her and that she lost the chance of having a baby twice (because of Ginny and what unfortunately happened to Samuel). Maybe she also blames Ginny for the breakup of her marriage to Arthur and the fact that he had a connection with Ginny that he did not have with her. Maybe she resented what happened to her mother and thought Ginny did it and that Clive knew (even though I think Clive was the one to carry this out). I think she thought that the only connection that she had in the house had to do with Maud (and their laughter and conversations). She was in fact looking for some belongings of Maud (anything). Being the so called normal child, maybe she had built up a life time of resentment at the specialness that was Ginny and all of this resentment over the years had built up to a delusional hate exacerbated by the drinking. As you recall, Maud had resentment towards Ginny saying how she had given up her life for her (all of which came out for the first time as a drinker).

I don't think we have any evidence to show that Vivi had Ginny prayed for in church. This is a small community and where probably everyone knows that the woman who occupies the largest house in town, whose mother was once the center of the community and frequently opened the doors of their home to others, is a total recluse. That is reason enough for me to assume that the congregation itself has chosen to pray for Ginny and has probably been doing so for some time.
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KxBurns
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19



bentley wrote:

Everyman wrote:


KxBurns wrote:


renhair wrote:
My exact question when I read that passage. It's possible that she's someone from their youth. Vivi does say something about Eileen living in the house that her mother had. Nonetheless, she kind of came out of nowhere and there didn't seem to be any real framework or purpose...

Everyman wrote:
Who is Eileen anyhow, and did she show up earlier in the story and I missed it? How does Vivi know her after nearly fifty years away from the house?




I think she's just a friend Vivi made at the pub...



Did I miss a pub visit? When did this happen?




I did not see it as a pub visit either..maybe she was drinking at Eileen's house..whoever that happens to be (I did not see a mention of a friend Eileen from childhood). And why does this strange woman Eileen get invited to the house by Vivian without so much as consulting ahead of time to ask if Ginny would mind. I think it was a way to show off Ginny and say..see what she has become. Possibly take over the house was her plan; I think she was shocked actually to see all of the furnishings gone; maybe she thought of selling them off herself and her sister had already done it.

When Eileen visits the house, she an Vivi discuss some topics they had been discussing the previous day, which led me to assume they met at a pub since Vivi had come home smelling of alcohol that day. But, sure, it could have been at someone's house, too. Wherever Vivi met Eileen, I'm not sure I agree with it being such a big deal that Vivi brings a guest home. Isn't the house hers as much as Ginny's? What would be the harm in trying to engage Ginny in some socializing? I don't how it's indicative of a plan to steal the house out from under Ginny... am I missing something?
Wordsmith
kiakar
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19



detailmuse wrote:
Considering Vivi's (non-)reaction at the baby's birth and death, and her (non-)reaction at the baby's gravesite -- what explains her carrying the photo of her "pregnant" self with her ex-husband? Was it just a reminder of better times?


So she could say she was pregnant. For whatever reason.
Wordsmith
kiakar
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19



kiakar wrote:


detailmuse wrote:
Considering Vivi's (non-)reaction at the baby's birth and death, and her (non-)reaction at the baby's gravesite -- what explains her carrying the photo of her "pregnant" self with her ex-husband? Was it just a reminder of better times?


So she could say she was pregnant. For whatever reason.


I meant, that she had been pregnant.
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LizzieAnn
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19

I agree because whatever she's suffering from has an affect on her actions & reactions.


Everyman wrote:

I think it might at least be helpful to know what the family thought her problem was. Obviously Vivi has her ideas, since she tells Ginny, though we don't hear it because Ginny blanks it out. But clearly the family had discussed it, and presumably Dr. Moyse had some idea which he presumably shared at least with Maud and Clive and maybe they with Vivi. I would like at least to know what Vivi would have said the problem was.


Liz ♥ ♥


Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested. ~ Francis Bacon
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LizzieAnn
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Re: Sunday: Chapters 17 through 19

I agree with you about Vivi's warring emotions.  However, I don't think it's strange that she feels that Ginny shares some of the blame.  Vivi seems to believe that Ginny knows exactly what happened - that Clive pushed Maud.  However, Ginny was prevented from telling the police because the doctor (& Clive?) arranged it that she never spoke to them.  No matter how hard Vivi tried to get the police to do so.  It's no wonder that she harbors resentment toward Ginny, even after all these years.  She feels the Ginny was able to protect Clive (who favored Ginny) while Maud (who favored Vivi) was lost.
 


KxBurns wrote:
 
I think Vivi is dealing with warring emotions. On the one hand, I think she cares about Ginny and genuinely feels the instinct to protect her. At this point in the book, I'm starting to assume that the family never knew for sure what was wrong with Ginny so the desire to protect her from the prying of someone from Social Services makes sense to me.
 
On the other hand, her frustration with Ginny's condition might be understandable if you figure that she does not have a good understanding of her sister's "peculiarities" and might very well just chalk Ginny's oddness up to a willful refusal to participate fully in the world. I mean, both women were raised in this dysfunctional family.
 
Her suggestion that Ginny take a share of the blame for Maud's death is pretty strange, though. I can only interpret it as the result of a lifelong resentment toward Ginny for what Vivi probably perceived as getting away with everything. We still don't know why they got kicked out of school or how much Viv knows about Ginny and Arthur's attachment to each other... I see lots of places for resentment to fester!   




Liz ♥ ♥


Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested. ~ Francis Bacon
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