Book Club Kits
by Eugenides, Jeffrey
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1. What is the meaning of the title of the book?
2. How is Cal's experience living within two genders similar to the immigrant experience of living within two cultures? How is it different?
3. Is Cal's condition a result of chance or of fate? Which of these forces governs the world as Cal sees it? Do the other characters see this the way Cal does?
4. Why does Cal decide to live as a man rather than as a woman? Can you understand the choice Cal made?
5. How does Cal's experience reflect on the "nature vs. nurture" debate about gender identity? Which do you think plays a more important role? Did reading this book change any of your opinions about this?
6. What is the role of the house, Middlesex, in the story? What does it mean to the characters?
7. "Middlesex" is set against the backdrop of several historical events: the war between Greece and Turkey, the rise of the Nation of Islam, World War II, and the Detroit riots. How does history shape the lives of the characters in the novel?
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