Paul's Case Questions and Answers

Paul's Case

In the first few paragraphs of "Paul's Case," we are given various details of Paul's appearance and behavior, some of which are focalized through the viewpoint of his teachers while others are...

Latest answer posted October 6, 2019, 5:44 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul commits suicide because the perceived banality of his existence is overwhelming. Once he escapes to New York, Paul recognizes a life that is beyond his world of Cordelia Street. Cather...

Latest answer posted November 8, 2013, 11:36 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Flowers, as well as the color red, are constant motifs in Willa Cather's "Paul's Case". The flowers are te ultimate symbol of aesthetic beauty: their shape, their delicacy, the sweet scent, their...

Latest answer posted November 8, 2013, 10:47 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul's teachers have a long list of complaints regarding Paul. Each teacher also seems to suppose that Paul's awkward looks are indicative of something much more sinister lurking within his mind,...

Latest answer posted January 29, 2016, 3:38 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

The theme of "Paul's Case" is that when the world of illusion, of the superficial, becomes too appealing to us, it can destroy us. We can feel some sympathy for Paul as he rejects the narrow,...

Latest answer posted January 24, 2018, 12:19 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

I would argue that Paul is a static character in that he doesn't really change throughout the course of the story. From first to last, he remains trapped in a fantasy world of his own making. He's...

Latest answer posted September 21, 2018, 6:30 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

As someone who is obsessed with luxury, art, and wealth, Paul enjoys working as an usher at Pittsburgh's Carnegie Hall; he loves the grandiosity of the place and the beautifully designed and...

Latest answer posted October 9, 2020, 8:37 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

In Willa Cather’s story, Paul is a dynamic character. He is a teenager who is experiencing numerous developmental issues that are compounded by his personal situation. Cather shows the changes that...

Latest answer posted July 13, 2019, 4:13 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Omniscient is one type of third-person point of view or perspective. A third-person narrator is one who is located outside the work’s action. The word omniscient means “all-knowing.” In literary...

Latest answer posted February 7, 2021, 11:18 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul is deeply alienated from the mundane reality of his life. At the same time, he is gifted with an extraordinary imagination and a flair for performance. The theater, and the actors there, seem...

Latest answer posted March 29, 2021, 11:19 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul sees lying as a way to cope with the life of Cordelia Street. Paul sees his life as comprising of experiences in which "days and nights out of the dreary blanks of the calendar, when his...

Latest answer posted November 9, 2013, 12:49 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

From the reader's perspective, the chief difference between Paul and the college student he meets is that, while the former is the story's protagonist and is described in some detail, the latter...

Latest answer posted November 3, 2019, 7:19 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

In "Paul's Case", Willa Cather is quite specific in that this story is not meant to be biographical, or a tale in the typical sense. Instead, she uses the subtitle "A Study in Temperament" to...

Latest answer posted July 9, 2012, 10:48 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

The title, "Paul's Case," immediately suggests that Paul has or is a problem, perhaps of a legal or medical nature. Lawyers and doctors talk about cases, and these cases are matters to be resolved...

Latest answer posted February 7, 2021, 11:43 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

This story the two pictures above Paul's bed are symbolic. On the surface, it is noted in the story that his mother had framed these pictures with the quote "feed my lambs,"and she is now dead....

Latest answer posted February 7, 2009, 3:19 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul is having this thought as he jumps in front of a speeding train to commit suicide at the end of the story. The thought is as follows: As he fell, the folly of his haste occurred to him with...

Latest answer posted June 12, 2020, 7:45 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul's Case begins in Pittsburgh. The setting changes to New York City for the second half of the narrative. Cather is not an author of convenience--she does not idly pick settings for simplistic...

Latest answer posted October 1, 2009, 8:37 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

This story is called "Paul's Case"; a case is a situation that seems to require some investigation or action, or it can refer to the actual object—or person—to be investigated or considered. The...

Latest answer posted April 20, 2019, 12:32 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul was fascinated with the theater. It influenced his thinking and personality more than anything else in his dreary world. He was not a good student because he lived in a fantasy world....

Latest answer posted December 15, 2013, 12:14 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul is tall and skinny with "hysterical" eyes. He has an unusually narrow chest and he is "exceedingly sensitive" about this. Paul has no interest in school. In fact, he does whatever he can to...

Latest answer posted September 30, 2015, 11:40 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Both Paul's father and Charley Edwards would have experienced shock and guilt about Paul's death. Paul's father's emotions, however, would have gone far beyond those of Charley into grief and...

Latest answer posted February 28, 2020, 4:22 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

"Paul's Case: A Study in Temperament" is, like the title implies, an analysis of a particular individual whose unique nature makes him worthy of exploration. This is not a story about the life of a...

Latest answer posted February 7, 2012, 10:27 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Willa Cather's most powerful technique for developing Paul as a character is direct exposition as an authorial voice that presents information about Paul to the reader in thorough detail. With this...

Latest answer posted June 2, 2011, 2:48 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

There are many moral lessons one can derive from "Paul's Case" by Willa Cather, but the most important can be summed up in three words: always be yourself. It's such a simple lesson, but one that...

Latest answer posted September 16, 2020, 2:38 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul, like many adolescents, feels different and isolated from the people around him, who live sordid and ugly lives to his mind. He despises his teachers and tries to isolate himself from them. He...

Latest answer posted May 3, 2020, 9:44 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul is late getting home, and as he nears his house, he becomes more and more averse to facing his father. He imagines his father waiting for him at the top of the staircase with "his hairy legs...

Latest answer posted September 16, 2020, 2:57 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

The escapade which forms the principal part of "Paul's Case" is the type of thing which could easily be found in the early chapters of many biographies and autobiographies of the great and the...

Latest answer posted February 17, 2020, 12:32 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul's trouble is that he wants more than the mediocre middle-class existence he has been born into, where the stale smells of cooking linger in his house. He wants more than Sunday School picnics...

Latest answer posted May 18, 2019, 8:25 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Certainly, in Part I of the story, the point of view is third person omniscient. The narrator is not a participant in the events (and does not use the first person pronoun "I"), but he or she can...

Latest answer posted September 17, 2018, 5:37 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul runs off to New York after stealing a large sum of money from his employer. Paul has spent the whole of his life in a fantasy world. As a staunch nonconformist, someone who doesn't seem to...

Latest answer posted September 24, 2018, 5:49 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

Paul's Case

This is an interesting question, because so much of this story's power comes from the detached point of view of the narrator, who nevertheless seems to empathize with Paul. I think one place you...

Latest answer posted February 24, 2016, 11:20 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

At the turn of the 20th century, when Willa Cather published “Paul’s Case,” there were fewer resources available to parents whose children were not fitting in at their school. Paul’s father decided...

Latest answer posted June 24, 2019, 2:22 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

It is also significant that the flowers represent artificiality: the flowers Paul sees as he rides through New York are growing under glass, in an artificial environment. Paul tends to find...

Latest answer posted February 22, 2012, 5:25 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul's extreme attachment to his job has led him to, literally, lead a double life in his mind. While he does attend school and carries out with everything his father tells him to do, his mind is...

Latest answer posted November 25, 2015, 4:44 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

I think we need to be very careful about reading too much into the character of Paul from our own cultural viewpoint. Let us remember that this story is set in a very different historical period...

Latest answer posted November 9, 2011, 11:06 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

In Willa Cather's short story, "Paul's Case" and Edgar Allan Poe's "The Fall of the House of Usher," there is in each protagonist a disengagement from reality that leads to eventual destruction. A...

Latest answer posted April 2, 2012, 11:21 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

I assume that by the “four conflicts,” you mean conflict in a psychological, and not literary, sense. The four conflicts, as developed by Kurt Lewin, are as follows: approach-approach—where one...

Latest answer posted August 10, 2018, 12:12 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

We need to be careful when using the term allegory in relation to this tale. An allegory is a story where every character and action, and each setting, has a parallel that corresponds to its...

Latest answer posted March 4, 2012, 2:56 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Flowers represent Paul's spirit in this story. I come to this conclusion for several reasons. First, this line: " His teachers felt this afternoon that his whole attitude was symbolized by his...

Latest answer posted March 2, 2007, 5:45 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

The basic premise of the quote [Paul] "was interested in the triumphs of these cash boys who had become famous, though he had no mind for the cash-boy stage"? is that Paul's temperament is one...

Latest answer posted August 27, 2012, 5:56 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

Paul's Case

This question is very much asking for a subjective reader opinion. You may certainly claim that Paul is both likable and easy to sympathize with; however, I do think you would be in the minority....

Latest answer posted September 16, 2020, 11:45 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

Paul's Case

Paul is a deeply troubled young man, hopelessly at odds with everyone and everything around him. He longs to escape from his relatively humble background and emulate the opulent lifestyles of the...

Latest answer posted July 7, 2018, 10:02 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul loves glamor, beauty, and wealth, as well as top-quality items. He loves his job as an usher at Carnegie Hall because he gets to wear a handsome uniform that fits properly and is not worn down...

Latest answer posted August 27, 2019, 7:53 pm (UTC)

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Paul's Case

Paul is enamored of the music he hears at the concert. It transports him to a different world, a utopia of beauty and excitement. He actually follows the German soloist home, imagining as he does...

Latest answer posted October 29, 2007, 12:27 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

Paul's Case

Paul despises his teachers at school. He is indifferent to their teaching and tries hard to make them aware of his disdain for them in "polite ways." For instance, he wears a "red carnation in his...

Latest answer posted March 27, 2018, 2:51 pm (UTC)

2 educator answers

Paul's Case

The American Dream is the underlying theme in "Paul's Case." Paul's father is a perfect example of this theme."Paul's father and the rest of Cordelia Street, a "perfectly...

Latest answer posted September 21, 2008, 7:37 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

Paul's Case

As in much Modernist literature Willa Cather's character, Paul of "Paul's Case" seeks to find meaning in a petty world. As Georg Simmel, a Modernist, wrote, The deepest problems of modern life...

Latest answer posted December 20, 2009, 3:23 am (UTC)

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Paul's Case

There's an appalling sense of inevitability about Paul's tragic demise. He's spent most of his short life on this earth chasing a dream, pursuing a fantasy that's eventually come to destroy him....

Latest answer posted July 10, 2018, 6:26 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

Paul's Case

This is a fascinating question that goes to the very heart of this excellent and moving short story about a young man who prefers the world of illusion to the world of reality. Certainly, overtly...

Latest answer posted December 29, 2010, 3:20 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

Paul's Case

I am not sure which action you are referring to, so I am assuming it is his decision to run away and then subsequently killing himself. It has been a great debate about whether Paul really knew...

Latest answer posted August 21, 2008, 11:23 am (UTC)

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