The Poisonwood Bible Study Guide
Sanderling Island, Georgia(United States)
“The Poisonwood Bible” offers a different outlook on migration literature. Barbara Kingsolver talks about an American family who relocated to Africa. The text has made a powerful impact on the Western readers who often find themselves entrapped in the bubble of their smooth everyday life.
The story takes place at the end of the 1950s. The protagonists are the Prince family: a father who is a Baptist minister, a mother, and 4 daughters. They live a good life in the state of Georgia. At one point the head of the family is sent to Congo as a missionary with a goal to enlighten the people of Africa. Of course, the family follows him.
At the time of their arrival to Congo their oldest daughter was 15, the twins Leah and Adah were 14 and the youngest was only 4 years old. The process of assimilating with a rough life of a wild African continent begins. The country, which suffered a lot of wars, famine and gender violence, accepts the newcomers with cold welcomes.
The family builds a new network of friends and colleagues, they grow food, try to survive, experience the political instability of the country, and lose the hopes of ever coming back to the USA. The exposure to missionary work also has its influences on the family. Will their religion bring joy and light to the tribes they are teaching?
“The Poisonwood Bible” is quite a lengthy text that is rich in descriptions and meanings. Different characters, mostly the daughters and Leah in particular, narrate the story. Thus the different styles of the chapters, different focuses and the diverse feelings they evoke in the reader.
The book makes the reader think and want more information about the history of Congo. It also evokes the “what if” questions and makes us think about how unpredictable the life is.
Two Contrasting Places Barbara Kingsolver's highly acclaimed fiction novel is a truly academic work of art created to address the concepts of guilt, religion, and foreign interference. The novel follows the exceedingly religious Price family as they venture from the small southern town of Bethlehem...
Intro People always greatly and negatively impact each other, though they believe it to be for the greater good. In the 1950’s European and American imperialism tore asunder what tranquility there was in the Congo. These countries may have not been aware of their influence at the time, but the...
Bryan Duong Clarke English IV AP Poisonwood Bible Essay The trip to the Congo has changed all of the Price women permanently. They were all affected in some way by this exile from the material items in their previous cherished world. It has affected them in both enlightening ways as well as...
Poisonwood Bible Family conflicts All families have conflicts, and the Price family is no exception. Within the story there is an overriding conflict regarding the Price women‘s opposition to the move to Africa. Beyond this, Nathan has many other conflicts with each of his daughters. Leah and her...