Out of the Dust Questions and Answers

Out of the Dust

There are many problems in Out of the Dust, but all of them seem to stem from two particularly big problems. The first is, of course, the dust storms. The dust storms have made farming for wheat...

Latest answer posted March 4, 2019 7:43 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Out of the Dust

Billy Jo's mother did indeed die. In the section entitled "Devoured," dated August 1934, Billy Jo wrote, "Ma died that day giving birth to my brother." Ma had been burned in a terrible accident,...

Latest answer posted January 5, 2010 6:55 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

One of Ma's "Rules of Dining" is to "place plates upside down," and another rule is to set the "glasses bottom side up." Ma sets the plates and glasses like this so as to prevent the dust from...

Latest answer posted May 2, 2021 4:46 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Death often causes people to reexamine their own life, to prioritize, and to try to live more fully. In that way, it can lead people to give up old grudges, to spend more quality time with loved...

Latest answer posted June 3, 2007 11:46 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

As we follow the trials and struggles of Billie Jo Kelby in Karen Hesse's poetic novel Out of the Dust, we might well decide that this characters has one of the worse runs of bad luck ever. She's...

Latest answer posted August 7, 2020 6:06 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

In my copy of this book, the poem "Hope" is found beginning on page 176. There is an example of alliteration in this line: lacy on the edges of my sleeves. The repetition of the s sound, even in...

Latest answer posted December 2, 2020 1:52 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

One of the most important lessons Billie Jo learns is that she can't run away from her problems. At one point in the story, she runs away, intending to go west to seek a better life. She is...

Latest answer posted January 16, 2009 11:52 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

In Out of the Dust, the poem "Something Lost, Something Gained" from August 1935 tells of Billie Jo’s experience running away from home and befriending a man on the freight train. Feeling unable to...

Latest answer posted December 16, 2020 3:26 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Alliteration is the repetition of consonant sounds (usually at the beginnings of words) within a single line. Here are some lines with the page numbers as they are located in my copy of Out of the...

Latest answer posted November 23, 2020 3:10 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

"Out of the Dust" by Karen Hesse is a novel written in the form of free verse poetry. Free verse poetry, as the name indicates, is free from the limitations imposed by rhyme and meter. It is not...

Latest answer posted April 10, 2016 8:10 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Karen Hesse's poetic novel Out of the Dust is filled with interesting literary devices. Let's look at a few from pages 153–175. The title of the very first poem in this section is actually a...

Latest answer posted November 30, 2020 6:49 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

By the summer of 1935, Billie Jo is fed up with dust and depression and hardship and regret. She still grieves for her mother, suffers with pain in her hands, and resents her father's distance....

Latest answer posted June 3, 2021 12:14 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Karen Hesse's poetic novel Out of the Dust is filled with literary devices. Let's take a look at some of them from pages 93–110. We see some dialogue in “Mad Dog's Tale” as Mad Dog explains how he...

Latest answer posted November 18, 2020 9:55 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Out of the Dust takes the form of a diary in verse in which the narrator, Billy Jo, uses a large number of similes, one of the most common literary devices for making comparisons (specifically with...

Latest answer posted March 27, 2019 11:41 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse invites much debate about its diary-like structure and poetic devices. It is narrated by fourteen-year old Billie Jo, an unreliable narrator, and can be enjoyed for...

Latest answer posted July 14, 2015 12:27 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Out of the Dust

In “Gone West” in Karen Hesse's Out of the Dust, Billie Jo has left home and headed west. She wants to escape the dust and the hardship. She wants to get away from her father's apparent lack of...

Latest answer posted June 5, 2021 1:49 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Out of the Dust, by Karen Hesse, follows the tragic circumstances of Billie Jo Kelby, a little red-headed girl living in Dust Bowl era Oklahoma with her father, "Daddy," and pregnant mother, "Ma."...

Latest answer posted June 11, 2016 10:27 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Let us remember that a symbol is an object that stands both for itself and some kind of larger idea or concept. When we look at the piano in this story therefore it is important that we think of...

Latest answer posted March 20, 2012 3:24 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Billie-Jo has hitched a ride aboard a train headed out West, hoping to put her traumatic past behind her and start a new life. During the long, hard journey, a stranger gets on board Billie-Jo's...

Latest answer posted December 16, 2018 12:12 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

In her poetic novel Out of the Dust, Karen Hesse sets forth the story of Billie Jo in a series of poems that are filled with figurative language and imagery. Hesse employs metaphor, simile,...

Latest answer posted November 19, 2020 6:05 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

To answer this question, we must look at Billie Jo, her father (Bayard), and her mother (Polly) individually. Billie Jo: At the beginning of the novel, Billie Jo is a 14-year-old girl with a talent...

Latest answer posted July 15, 2019 11:43 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Let's take a look at what happens in pages 75–92 of Karen Hesse's poetic novel Out of the Dust. This section features twelve poems set in the summer and autumn of 1934. In the first poem, “Roots,”...

Latest answer posted November 18, 2020 3:54 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Karen Hesse's novel Out of the Dust is rather unique overall, because it is composed of a series of poems rather than a prose narrative. Throughout those poems, Hesse incorporates many different...

Latest answer posted November 17, 2020 9:10 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

The poem “Beat Wheat” (April 1934) addresses the drought and presents Billie Jo’s growing understanding of the very difficult situation of her family and all their neighbors. The overall tone is...

Latest answer posted June 3, 2021 5:10 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

In Karen Hesse's novel "Out of The Dust, the narrator is Billie Joe Kelby. She demonstrates many different qualities throughout the novel. She is a very talented piano player. She dreams and...

Latest answer posted July 3, 2009 5:59 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Out of the Dust is a first person narrative, meaning the protagonist (main character) tells the story in his or her own words. What sets this narrative apart from others is that Hesse's...

Latest answer posted September 1, 2009 1:13 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Though the mood throughout the novel shifts and changes as the plot develops, the overall mood of Out of the Dust is hopeful. The heart of the novel is about the ability to heal from hardships, and...

Latest answer posted June 14, 2018 6:52 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

When drought struck the central United States in the 1930s, it turned the entire region into a barren, dust-covered, poverty-stricken Dust Bowl where people had to fight to survive. Karen Hesse's...

Latest answer posted April 24, 2021 3:15 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Mrs. Brown is a woman who lives in the area of Oklahoma where the story takes place; her home is within walking distance from Bilie Jo's house. Mrs. Brown owns a cereus plant, a desert cactus...

Latest answer posted February 18, 2010 7:27 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

I've included the links to the quicknotes guide from enotes that will provide you detailed information. For a quick overview, however:The point of view is 1st person. The story is narrated by...

Latest answer posted February 24, 2008 11:34 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse is a novel, so it is not a true story in the sense that Billie Jo and her family really existed. They did not. They are fictional characters, and the events of their...

Latest answer posted April 22, 2021 5:00 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

In Karen Hesse's poetic novel Out of the Dust, Billie Jo is probably most impressed by her mother's perseverance. Times are hard. The family's crops have failed. Dust is everywhere. Rain is scarce,...

Latest answer posted March 1, 2021 2:51 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Hyperbole is extreme exaggeration for effect. One example can be seen when Billie Jo’s teacher, Miss Freeland, explains how the Dust Bowl developed ("September 1934 / The Path of Our Sorrow"; pages...

Latest answer posted May 12, 2021 9:26 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Arley Wanderdale is the music teacher who comes to Billie Jo's school once a week. He encourages Billie Jo to pursue her interest in music, even when no one else does. Ma says he’s no teacher at...

Latest answer posted May 1, 2013 9:52 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

"Hope" and “Hope Smothered” are two poems from May 1935. In “Hope,” Billie Jo tells of the snow that soon turns to a gentle rain, followed by several days of downpour. After the long drought, her...

Latest answer posted December 16, 2020 4:13 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

My version may differ from yours, so be sure to double check any page numbers. I'll try to include a variety of pages to hopefully hit the right range. In the poem "Outlined in Dust," Billie Jo...

Latest answer posted November 20, 2020 12:02 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

The poem “Met” in Karen Hesse's poetic novel Out of the Dust is appropriately titled, for the poem is all about meetings that have now taken place. The poem appears toward the end of the novel....

Latest answer posted May 12, 2021 3:58 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Billie Jo's decision to begin playing Ma's piano again represents her growth and evolution as a human being who has been touched by tragedy. After the deaths of Ma and Franklin, Billie Jo avoids...

Latest answer posted June 11, 2016 11:08 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Billie Jo's father gains a new respect for his daughter after he sees her compete in the talent show. Billie Jo says, "It's okay with him if I want to play. He didn't even know I was at the piano...

Latest answer posted February 25, 2010 12:52 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Billie Jo's central hope is that she will be able to use her considerable talents and skills in order to escape the kind of bleak and barren life that she lives in Oklahoma. Note the way that she...

Latest answer posted January 1, 2012 3:14 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

In April of 1935, Billie Jo is asked to play the piano at the school's graduation. After the death of her mother and baby brother, Billie Jo has refused to practice on Ma's piano; the terrible...

Latest answer posted June 11, 2016 11:19 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

In Out of the Dust, the sections on February 1935 and March 1935 that span pages 129–145 include a large number of literary devices. In the section “The Competition,” which begins on page 129,...

Latest answer posted November 22, 2020 4:51 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Billie Jo and Mad Dog have a genuine friendship—one that Billie Jo appreciates as it develops, even if she doesn't quite understand it. She remarks that she doesn't understand why he's always...

Latest answer posted February 7, 2020 3:17 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Playing the piano is an ongoing theme present throughout Out of the Dust. Billie Jo learned piano from her mother, and their shared love of playing was one of their most important common bonds....

Latest answer posted December 16, 2020 6:49 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

The page numbers can vary with different printings. I'll include my page numbers, and hopefully they will line up fairly closely with your own. An oxymoron consists of two seemingly contradictory...

Latest answer posted November 18, 2020 3:56 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

In the chapter titled "Cut It Deep" of Karen Hesse's Out of the Dust, Billie Jo and her father have just returned from Doc Rice's and now feel brave enough to sort through a box belonging to Billie...

Latest answer posted July 13, 2015 12:01 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Karen Hesse’s novel Out of the Dust is a compelling example of the genre of historical fiction. The situation in which the protagonist, Billie Joe, and her family find themselves is specific to the...

Latest answer posted December 11, 2020 3:18 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

By the time that Billie Jo meets the man on the boxcar, she and her father are at such incredible odds that it seems as though they may never reconcile. It is clear to Billie Jo that against his...

Latest answer posted September 2, 2019 9:29 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

The spring of 1934 is covered in Out of the Dust in numerous chapters from March through May. Billie Jo describes the terrible dust storms, which blow dust and sand through every crack. Even while...

Latest answer posted May 8, 2021 4:42 am UTC

1 educator answer

Out of the Dust

Imagery is the use of descriptive language that refers to the five senses. Often primarily using visual images, an author creates a word picture. By including all the senses, the author can evoke a...

Latest answer posted May 13, 2021 4:30 am UTC

1 educator answer

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