The Lesson Questions and Answers
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What is the central conflict of The Lesson? How is it resolved?

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The central conflict in "The Lesson" on one level is the resistance of the children to the "lessons" Miss Moore is trying to teach them. This conflict works in several ways. From a practical point of view, the conflict is a battle over attention: Miss Moore struggles to keep her students' attention, and the story, told from the point of view of one of the girls, captures the overactive mental energy of children. The narrator is processing what Miss Moore says, dismissing it, evaluating the responses of the other children, comparing herself to them, asserting her dominance, and thinking about what will come next, all at the same time.

On another level, the conflict as to do with the narrator's own realization about the experience Miss Moore has given them and her attitude about that realization. The trip to the toy store grounds in reality the things Miss Moore has been trying to teach them about money. Her realization that the cost of a single toy boat could more than pay for food for...

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