Anansi Boys Essay Questions

Essay Questions

  1. 1

    Who is Anansi?

    Anansi is the name that appears in the title and he is also the father of the two main characters in the book. Anansi is one of the most important gods in the West African folklore and is seen as being the God of Knowledge and storytelling. In many cultures, he has supernatural powers and has the capability to bring rain. His name means spired and he is often portrayed as being a spider of a man with spider-like features. In the book, Anansi is a trickster who during his life managed to enrage many people who once knew him.

  2. 2

    What does the author mean when he talks about a woman having the hysterics?

    When Mr. Nancy felt from the stage, he grabbed the top of a woman in the bar and revealed her breasts to everyone in the room. While initially everyone was mad at what Mr. Nancy had done, they soon realized that he died and called an ambulance. Soon after, the woman whose top was taken by Mr. Nancy is described as having hysterics in the women’s bathroom. In this context, it may refer to a possible mental breakdown or possible an anxiety attack the woman may have experienced as a result of either being publicly humiliated and exposed or because she saw a man die in front of her eyes.

  3. 3

    Why is Fat Charlie feeling a constant shame even though nothing shameful happens to him?

    Fat Charlie is a grown man with a constant feeling of shame. Even when he does nothing wrong he feels as if he needs to be sorry for everything. His situation is so bad that he has to get out a room when something embarrassing happens on the TV. The reason why he feels in such a way is because Charlie was always made to felt shame. When he was a child and living with his father, he was the subject of his father’s constant teasing and of his pranks that made Charlie appear as a negative character to his peers. When Charlie moved to England with his mother, he was once more the object of bullying because of his accent. Because of all these, Charlie grew up feeling shame almost every day and also grew up to be incapable of dealing with shameful situations.

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