Questions and Answers for Kindred

Kindred

Why is it important to examine history from different perspectives/ points of view, knowing that we can't change...

Every account of history is from a human perspective. Even history textbooks, which are trying to be objective, show us what the writers value by what they include, what they leave out, and how...

Latest answer posted October 4, 2018 2:47 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Kindred

How does Kevin and Dana's relationship progress in the book Kindred, even though Dana keeps going back and forth in...

In the book Kindred by Octavia Butler, the relationship between Kevin and Dana is complicated and consistently changing. They are an interracial couple who have had to deal with unaccepting family...

Latest answer posted December 16, 2019 11:38 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Kindred

How does Rufus die in Kindred?

In the final moments of the main narrative in Octavia Butler’s Kindred, the protagonist, Dana, kills her ancestor and adversary, Rufus. Throughout the novel, Dana is forcibly pulled back through...

Latest answer posted June 12, 2019 3:22 am UTC

2 educator answers

Kindred

How would you describe the relationship between Rufus and Dana in Kindred?

The previous educators have classified this relationship as complex and complicated, and I think those are great descriptors. I would add that Dana's feelings toward Rufus are symbolic of the...

Latest answer posted February 18, 2020 8:56 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Kindred

In Kindred, what is the significance of Dana losing her arm?

One of the more curious aspects of this incredible story is the way that Dana, as she returns to the present from the past for the last time, loses her arm as she returns and is literally disabled...

Latest answer posted November 3, 2011 8:11 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

In Kindred, how many times does Dana travel back to the 1800s?

In the novel Kindred, Dana travels back to 1800's Maryland 7 times. The first time, she arrives to find Rufus, drowning in the river and she pulls him to safety. When she returns to Maryland the...

Latest answer posted January 29, 2016 4:24 am UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

What are the similarities and difference between Alice and Dana in Kindred?

In Octavia Butler's historical time-travel novel Kindred, the protagonist, Dana, is repeatedly summoned back in time to ensure the continuation of her bloodline. This rests on Rufus Weylin, a white...

Latest answer posted September 28, 2018 8:38 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Kindred

How does Octavia Butler challenge us to consider boundaries in Kindred? (black/white, master/slave, husband/wife,...

In Octavia Butler's historical time-travel novel Kindred, the author challenges the reader to consider the dichotomies that seem so easy and automatic (past and present; black and white; master and...

Latest answer posted October 4, 2018 4:52 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Kindred

What is the historical context in Octavia Butler's novel Kindred?

Octavia Butler’s 1979 novel Kindred takes place in two periods of time, 1976, when the protagonist, Dana, has just turned 26 years-old, and 1819, decades before the Civil War would finally put an...

Latest answer posted March 7, 2014 6:41 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

Stereotypes are often addressed in Butler’s novels, including Kindred. In Kindred, how does the author, with her...

Octavia Butler's Kindred features a protagonist, Dana, who is a black woman in the 1970s in California. Dana gets mysteriously, and without much warning, pulled back into the antebellum South to...

Latest answer posted December 18, 2018 2:50 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

How does Dana influence Rufus and his attitudes toward slavery in Kindred?

Dana, a time traveler from the late twentieth century, has hopes to change history when she meets Rufus Weylin. As an African American woman with modern ideas about racial equality (and the unique...

Latest answer posted May 24, 2019 1:36 am UTC

2 educator answers

Kindred

Compare Rufus and his dad. Is Rufus an improvement over his father? How is Dana's influence evident on the adult Rufus?

In Octavia Butler's historical time-travel novel Kindred, the two characters Rufus Weylin, and his father Tom Weylin, are white slave owners in the antebellum South. The protagonist, Dana, a black...

Latest answer posted October 3, 2018 5:45 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Kindred

Why is the book called Kindred?

Octavia Butler's novel Kindred is titled this because the protagonist, Dana, learns about her family history—in other words, who her kin were—throughout the novel. One day in 1976, Dana is...

Latest answer posted April 28, 2019 7:00 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Kindred

In "Kindred", how are Kevin and Dana different and similar?

Kevin and Dana Franklin are husband and wife. They met at an tempoary employment agency. Dana is an African American woman. She is small and attractive. She is intelligent and creative, an...

Latest answer posted October 16, 2008 2:23 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

Why does Tom Weylin whip Dana in Kindred by Octavia E. Butler?

In the novel Kindred, by Octavia Butler we meet Dana and Kevin Franklin. They are an interracial couple who are moving into a new home. Dana is taken suddenly back in time to the Civil War era...

Latest answer posted February 23, 2010 6:05 am UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

What are the similarities between Dana's relationship with Rufus and her relationship with Kevin in "Kindred"?

The similarities between Dana's relationships with Kevin and Rufus are surprisingly many. Both are white men in love with her, and in the early nineteenth century they are both her protectors by...

Latest answer posted June 14, 2008 5:26 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

How do the characters in Kindred assume the roles assigned them? How do they resist?

In Kindred, the person who has the most difficulty accepting her role in the past is Dana. Although she understands that she must, at the very least, help Rufus stay alive, she finds it morally...

Latest answer posted June 26, 2019 12:59 am UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

In Kindred, how does Dana come to feel at home at the Weylin plantation? What is Octavia Butler's idea of home in...

Dana's relationship to the Weylin plantation is a complicated one. It is simultaneously the birthplace of her ancestors and a place of historical and personal horror. As the novel progresses, Dana...

Latest answer posted January 23, 2020 3:31 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Kindred

Can you point out and explain three types of conflicts that arise in the story? This question requires three...

There are numerous instances throughout the book that represent the external conflict between two people. Dana and Rufus, for example, have a complicated relationship that is full of both physical...

Latest answer posted January 23, 2020 5:28 pm UTC

4 educator answers

Kindred

What are the similarities between Dana and Alice in "Kindred"?

Dana and Alice have a cosmic connection. (Time travel just has a way of enhancing bonds like that.) They may come from different time periods and points of view, but they're both African American...

Latest answer posted January 16, 2018 11:46 pm UTC

4 educator answers

Kindred

What role does Rufus' mom have in the formation of his character in "Kindred"? Is he influenced by her? If...

Margaret Weylin is fiercely protective of Rufus when he is a child, and jealous when he shows more interest in others besides her. Not wanting to lose his affectiion, she is permissive and allows...

Latest answer posted June 14, 2008 9:18 am UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

In what ways does the title Kindred encapsulate the relationships within the novel?

In Octavia Butler's historical time-travel novel "Kindred," the most apparent significance of the title refers to—as the other two answers have stated—the familial relationships that Dana is called...

Latest answer posted September 28, 2018 10:52 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Kindred

How is Kevin Franklin changed by his extended time in the nineteenth century?

There is indeed a difference in perspective when one reads about history and when one experiences history. Kevin and Dana, an interracial couple, are transported from the 1970s to the 1800s, where...

Latest answer posted April 6, 2019 7:26 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Kindred

in what page does Rufus called alice and dana "one woman"?  

Rufus stumbles home drunk in part 10 of the story and tells Alice and Dana that they are "only one woman". The following is from page 228: "Behold the woman" he said. And he looked from one to...

Latest answer posted May 14, 2013 8:58 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

Why might Octavia Butler have kept Kevin in the past for 5 years in Kindred?

Butler might have had Kevin stay in the past to get a better understanding of Dana, and to give Dana more time in the past to fully experience the lives of her slave ancestors. Kevin was...

Latest answer posted February 28, 2013 4:52 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

Why is the chapter in "Kindred" called "The Storm?"

The "Storm" is a transitional section of the book. Dana and Kevin are finally reunited at home, but Kevin has difficulty in adjusting to being back to the present. His emotions are...

Latest answer posted November 8, 2008 2:30 am UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

Can Kindred by Octavia Butler be called a love story?

A love story might be described as a narrative in which the love relationship (usually romantic) is the main driving force for the plot, and in which the major conflicts are strongly entwined with...

Latest answer posted October 4, 2018 12:28 am UTC

3 educator answers

Kindred

What are some possible themes of Kindred by Octavia Butler?

Like many of the novels which speak to the "human condition" and living life, the themes illuminated in Octavia Butler's novel Kindred are slavery, choices and consequences, appearance and reality,...

Latest answer posted December 17, 2011 2:40 am UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

In Octavia Butler's novel Kindred, what does Sarah teach Dana about becoming a woman? Be specific. How do her...

In Kindred, Sarah is a slave in the house. When Dana first meets her, she sees her as the "mammy" type, but soon discovers she is far more than that. Sarah teaches Dana how to cook. She also gives...

Latest answer posted October 22, 2014 4:35 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

When Dana has to explain to Alice that she is now a slave in Kindred, there are several role reversals. What are they?

After Alice and Isaac leave the plantation together, within a few days they are apprehended. Isaac is in legal trouble: he has struck Rufus and, as an enslaved person, is not allowed to travel...

Latest answer posted March 26, 2020 5:58 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Kindred

How would the story have been different with a third person narrator?

The use of the first-person narrative in Octavia Butler's Kindred achieves three main impacts: a contextual limit to the narrative itself, a deeper connection to the character, and, most...

Latest answer posted May 9, 2019 4:27 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Kindred

Dana's homes are her house in California and the Weylin plantation in Maryland in Kindred. However, the idea of home...

The complexity of her relationship with each of the time periods is hard to overstate. Her life in the 1970s obviously is much better because she is a free woman with a relatively good and happy...

Latest answer posted October 28, 2019 1:46 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Kindred

Stereotypes are often address in Butler's novels, including Kindred. In Kindred, how does the author, with her...

In Octavia Butler’s science fiction novel Kindred, Butler employees many of the stereotypes seen in slave narratives to examine race, gender, and power, as well as the impact slavery still has on...

Latest answer posted July 27, 2019 12:23 am UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

In Kindred, how does Dana face the problems of race or gender?

When Dana travels back in time, she is certainly in danger because of her race. However, being a black woman in this time period puts her doubly at risk. In Part 11, Rufus tells Dana that his own...

Latest answer posted July 7, 2019 9:37 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Kindred

What are the names of Dana's parents in "Kindred?" It is mentioned briefly in the book but I can't find it.

You must be speaking of the section in the book where Dana is recalling her family Bible. She does not mention her parents by name anywhere in the book but she does mention her grandmother, Hagar...

Latest answer posted December 13, 2009 11:29 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

In Kindred, why is Dana able to survive while Alice is not? Back up your answer with evidence from the novel. Cite...

Dana is from the future, so she knows what is going to happen. This gives her the strength to continue fighting. Dana is in a completely different situation from any of the characters that live in...

Latest answer posted February 26, 2013 6:05 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

In Kindred by Octavia Butler, why does Rufus want to be like his father?

Rufus Weylin doesn't intentionally set out to be like his father. When he is a young boy and falls and breaks his leg, Tom's first comment is that the accident is going to cost him a lot of money....

Latest answer posted June 1, 2019 5:30 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Kindred

In Kindred, Dana loses her left arm as she emerges for the last time in the novel from the past. Why is this...

The author never explains to readers why the loss of her arm is significant. That is left up to individual readers, and an argument could certainly be made that the arm being lost at the end of...

Latest answer posted July 23, 2019 2:05 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Kindred

Are there any allusions in Octavia Butler's novel Kindered?

The Prologue of Kindred begins with an allusion to events that occur within the interior of the novel, which commences in the form of flashbacks continuing from the starting point of the...

Latest answer posted February 10, 2011 5:13 am UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

In this story, why slavery and education are incompatible.

Slavery and education are incompatible in Kindred because as slaves become educated they gain the tools necessary to free themselves. The ability to read and write gives slaves the ability to...

Latest answer posted May 14, 2013 1:26 am UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

How can Rufus impact his mother's feelings toward Dana?

In the novel "Kindred," by Octavia Butler, Margaret Weylin is the mother of Rufus. She is very protective and overbearing where Rufus is concerned. She dislikes Dana on the spot. When Rufus...

Latest answer posted June 19, 2009 2:43 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

Where do Kevin and Dana go on their first date in Kindred?

The first meal that the characters Kevin and Dana from Kindred by Octavia Butler share is at lunch after meeting at work. At that point, they are both writers in Los Angeles, but he is more...

Latest answer posted November 18, 2019 6:15 am UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

In Kindred by Octavia Butler, why does Rufus want to kill himself in "The Fire"?

Rufus wanted to kill himself because his father beat him. Rufus’s father can sometimes be uncaring and cruel. Rufus respects some things about him, such as his apparent honesty, but is afraid of...

Latest answer posted February 26, 2013 4:45 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

Why are the two settings in Kindred so important?

Kindred has two very different settings; however, readers do not get much description regarding the location aspect of the setting. The book takes place in California for large parts of the story,...

Latest answer posted August 4, 2020 2:33 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

Compare Dana's professional life in the present with her life as a slave in Kindred.

In order to fund her struggling attempts to be a writer, Dana works at a temporary agency, doing various jobs for minimum wage. Interestingly, in chapter 3 she makes this statement: I was working...

Latest answer posted March 22, 2020 11:11 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

In Kindred, both Kevin and Dana know that they can't change history. They say: "We're in the middle of history. We...

Let me start by answering the final question in a more concrete way. The reason that the reader is experiencing Dana's journey in lockstep with her is because the narrative point of view is first...

Latest answer posted October 9, 2019 7:45 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

Why does Dana say this was "some kind of reverse symbolism" when she is called back to Rufus for the last time on...

It is an example of “reverse symbolism” because Fourth of July is Independence Day, and Rufus called Dana back to a time when she would be considered a slave. Symbolism is when something stands for...

Latest answer posted February 26, 2013 5:12 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

What motivates Dana to try to escape in "Kindred"?

Dana is motivated to escape by several desires or passions. Being accustomed to freedom, slavery chafes on her. She wants to be free. It is also hard for her to be around the suffering she sees....

Latest answer posted April 21, 2008 8:52 am UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

In Kindred, why do you think Octavia Butler chose to write a book about time travel to discuss the history of slavery...

This is a great question. I must admit, when I first heard about this book, I did think it sounded rather strange to have a science fiction book about time travel discussing slavery in America!...

Latest answer posted August 26, 2011 8:23 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Kindred

What lead to Alice's death in Kindred? 

There are a number of events directly leading up to Alice's death, but one could say that her enslavement was the first step on the long, hard road to her tragic demise. It's bad enough to be a...

Latest answer posted March 18, 2019 8:11 am UTC

2 educator answers

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