Discussion and Home Work Questions
- Palmetto Rose explores the ways past events may shape experiences in the present and future. What are some ways past events shaped the experiences and relationships of the characters as well as the lives of you and your loved ones?
- Throughout the novel, the narrator reflects upon and works through traumatic events in their life. What do you think of these issues, and what might be effective ways of managing or responding to trauma as a society?
- Palmetto Rose focuses on a group of twenty-somethings seeking to make sense of emerging adulthood. What are some ways you relate to or experience similar life choices, turning points, and events to the characters?
- The characters in the novel form and maintain varied types of relationships throughout the book. Think of your own life and relationships, how do the experiences of the characters compare?
- The novel explores some ways gender and sexualities may shape the experiences of people in society. What are some ways, positive and/or negative, gender and sexualities may shape your own life, relationships, and experiences?
Creative Writing Assignments
- Pick one of the characters in the novel and move forward in time ten years. What is their life like, where do they live, and what do they do for a living? Compose a story that answers these questions.
- Re-write the first chapter of the novel from Jackson’s perspective.
- Pick a character in the story, and write their story before, during, or after the events in the novel.
- Beginning after the end of one of the last five chapters, write an alternative ending to the novel.
- Pick a scene that the characters talk about in the book (i.e., some event you learn about in conversation, but do not witness with the narrator), and write that scene from the perspective of any character.
Qualitative Research Activities
- Select any conversation or event in the book and conduct a focus group to learn how other people interpret that conversation or event.
- Select a character and do a content analysis of that character. How do they talk? How do they see the world? What are their relationships (romantic, friendship, family, or otherwise) like? In what ways are they similar or different in relation to other characters? What information about them is missing and what information is presented in the novel? Overall, what can we learn from that character?