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Student Reminders! EN100 Students: Diagnostic Paragraphs Due 9/9


Welcome Back! Welcome Back, UWP Students. Thus begins the fall semester!


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Diamond Age Discussion Questions

1. Consider the title of the novel, including the subtitle. Why is it significant that it is the “Diamond Age,” specifically? What is a primer, and why is it important, thematically?
2. Keep the epigraph in mind as you read through the novel, and note where it applies to the characters of the novel.

3. This novel is science fiction, of course. However, science fiction writers aren’t merely writing about some imagined future (at least not Stephenson). Note significant places in the novel that you can compare to today as well as those you can contrast. Why do you think Stephenson draws particular comparisons or contrasts?

4. What are phyles, and why are they important in the novel? What do you think Stephenson has to say about cultural divisions?
5. Note all the things that are Victorian about the novel (including the Vickys). Why does Stephenson use so much from this period?

6. Like Beloved, this novel centers on a female protagonist, and it certainly has some things to teach us about gender. What are they?

7. Note the differences between things that are real (hand-made) versus those that are produced by the feed.

8. Note the areas where education is discussed. What do you think this novel has to say about contemporary education? Do you agree with it?

9. What is the difference between the “feed” and the “seed” we learn about later in the novel, and why is the difference important?

10. There is a difference between Nell and the orphan girls (who we learn about later in the novel). What is the difference and why is it important?

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