Grade: Senior
Subject: Literature

#3754. The Bean Tree's - Country Wisdom

Literature, level: Senior
Posted Thu Apr 27 11:41:00 PDT 2006 by Kenna Piercy (
Katella High School, Anaheim, Ca USA
Materials Required: Journal

The Bean Trees -- Wisdom Hidden in Plain Language

Much of the novel "The Bean Trees" By Barbara Kingsolver is written in common English, designed to appeal to every reader, no matter their education level. However, there is quite a bit of solid advice on how to live your life embedded in the novel.

Your assignment is to find the "Country Wisdom" or the quotes that have the rules for living in them, and copy them down into your dialectical journal. Once you copy the quote, you are to translate the advice that is given.

For example, Taylor's Mom says in chapter 5

"The way I see it a person isn't nothing more than a scarecrow. . . The only difference between one that stands up good and one that blows over is what kind of stick they're stuck up there on."

She's telling us that the only difference between someone who succeeds (the scarecrow that stands) and someone that fails (the one that falls) is the type of backbone they have. How much they try and how much they are willing to endure. That is the strength of the stick.