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Black Swan Green - SuperSummary Study Guide

Black Swan Green - SuperSummary Study Guide

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Published by supersummary
SuperSummary publishes high quality study guides for contemporary works of literature. Our study guides are all written by current and former English professors with PhDs or Masters degrees in English Literature. This Study Guide includes detailed chapter summaries and analysis, analysis of major characters, themes/motifs/symbols, top 10 quotes, and discussion questions.
SuperSummary publishes high quality study guides for contemporary works of literature. Our study guides are all written by current and former English professors with PhDs or Masters degrees in English Literature. This Study Guide includes detailed chapter summaries and analysis, analysis of major characters, themes/motifs/symbols, top 10 quotes, and discussion questions.

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Categories:Types, School Work
Published by: supersummary on Aug 27, 2013
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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04/14/2015

 
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Black Swan Green
SuperSummary Study Guide

Copyright 2013: SuperSummary
 
Black Swan Green
By David Mitchell
 A SuperSummary Study Guide
 
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Black Swan GreenSuperSummary Study Guide
 

Copyright 2013: SuperSummary
 
Table of Contents
Plot Overview
3
 
Chapter Summaries and Analysis
Chapter 1 4Chapter 2 6Chapter 3 7Chapter 4 8Chapter 5 9Chapter 6 11Chapter 7 12Chapter 8 13Chapter 9 14Chapter 10 15Chapter 11 16Chapter 12 17Chapter 13 18
Major Character Analysis
 
20
 
Jason Taylor Tom YewRoss Wilcox/Grant Burch/Gary Drake/Ant Little/Neal BroseDawn MaddenMadame CrommelynckCraig SaltSour Aunt
Themes, Motifs, Symbols
23
 Top 10 Quotes
25
Discussion Questions
26
 
3
Black Swan Green
SuperSummary Study Guide

Copyright 2013: SuperSummary
 
Plot Overview 
Black Swan Green
is a coming-of-age story set in Worchestershire, England beginningin January 1982. The title of the book takes its name from the small village that servesas the setting, but the name is ironic, since the lake is noticeably lacking in swans. Thebook is divided into thirteen chapters, with each chapter representing a month in the lifeof the protagonist, Jason Taylor. He is twelve years old when the story begins.Over the course of the novel, Jason’s family life unravels and begins to reform in a newshape. His father, Michael, an executive at the company Greenland, appears to bemarried to his job, traveling often and spending more and more time away from home.When he is home, the atmosphere is strained and awkward. In the book’s first chapter,Michael’s home office phone rings incessantly; it’s not until later in the book that thecaller is revealed as a long ago mistress with whom Michael has reignited an affair.Jason’s mother, who seems to be aware – or at least suspicious – of her husband’sinfidelity, first retaliates with a set of increasingly large household demands, including anew kitchen and a rockery complete with Japanese koi. Later, she takes a job managingan interior design gallery and proves to be successful professionally. With his older sister Julia away at university in Edinburgh, Jason finds himself more and more alone todeal with his problems.The book functions as a
bildungsroman
(a coming-of-age story), covering a crucialperiod of Jason’s adolescence. Jason, who sees a speech therapist for a humiliatingstammer, desperately wants to fit in with his schoolmates – not because he likes theseboys or their often-cruel pranks, but because fitting in would simply spare him the socialagony of being alone. Jason is also different in other ways – he is friendly, curious abouteverything, and secretly writes poetry under the pen name Eliot Bolivar. Over the courseof the book, Jason finds himself humiliated because of his stammer, tripped, pushed,and pelted with clods of dirt, extorted a pound per week for “popularity lessons,” andinevitably ostracized and excluded. Although he makes small gains throughout thebook, like his courageous attempt to stand up to the bully Ross Wilcox, much of Jason’syear is spent in a sort of social hell. He does manage to find friendship in other places –with Moran (another outcast, nicknamed Moron by the popular boys); with a mysteriousBelgian woman named Madame Crommelynck, who encourages Jason’s efforts as apoet; and with Holly Devlin, the new girl at school.The pressures of Jason’s family life and social life are mirrored in larger world conflicts,specifically in the Falkland Wars between the United Kingdom and Argentina. WhatEngland – and Margaret Thatcher’s government – expects to be a slam-dunk conflict issurprisingly bloody, and Tom Yew, one of the local heroes from Black Swan Green, iskilled at sea. Also, Jason’s little town becomes involved in a larger racial issue when it

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