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Ideas for Reports and Papers

(Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults)

1. Mina says that clubs formed by her friends are formed in order to leave people out and to make sure people know they are left out. Is this an accurate assessment of social clubs or is it unfair?

2. Mina's teacher is unhappy with her because she is not reading books about African Americans. Is it important to read about ethnic group as Mina's teacher insists? Why or why not?

3. Mina falls in love with Tamer, a much older married man, when she is eleven, and maintains her crush for several years. Does this seem realistic to you?

4. What are the qualities or attributes that make Mr. Bryce an ineffective teacher?

5. Mina's mother tells her that "there are men who don't like girls, women, to be too smart." Is this an attitude that has changed or is it still a prevailing attitude?

6. Most of the whites in Come a Stranger are portrayed as rather undesirable people: Mr. Bryce, Miss Maddinton, the people for whom Mina babysits, and the girls in the P.E. class. Has Voigt been too stereotypical in her portrayal of whites?

7. When Mina works for the Shipps, she cleans house, cooks, and tends children for small pay. She often works extra hours without being sure when she can leave. When she worked for a white family who treated her similarly, she considered them mean-spirited and abusive. Are the Shipps abusive of Mina?

8. Mrs. Smiths says that the white society wants everyone to be alike and has no place for eccentrics. Is this a true or false statement? Support your answer with examples.

9. Read The Runner and discover additional information about Tamer Shipp as a young man. Write a character sketch about Tamer from the information given in both books.