Day 3

Beowulf Lesson Plan

Discussion of Thought Questions

  1. 1

    What are some explanations of Grendel's mother's namelessness in the text?

    Student's answers may address: namelessness as a form of dehumanization, the role of women in Beowulf's society, names as indicators of where the reader's focus should be, and highlighting the idea of ancestry by constantly reminding the reader of Grendel rather than his mother.

  2. 2

    Notice the pronouns used in lines 1329-1344. Why does Hrothgar use both “its” and “she” to describe the monster?

    Hrothgar is dehumanizing Grendel's mother by removing not only her name and her familial ties but her gender as well. Perhaps by doing this he intends to make it easier for his subjects to direct anger...

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