Part 1 Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. Why is Violet referred to as the “Bird Lady”?

2. Why does the narrator describe Joe and Dorcas’ relationship as “one of those deep down, spooky loves”?

3. Why does Dorcas’ aunt Alice refuse to turn Joe over to the police?

4. Compare and contrast Violet with Dorcas.

5. How does Violet respond to the shooting?

6. What are Joe’s feelings about shooting Dorcas?

7. What is Violet’s plan?

8. Describe the atmosphere in Joe and Violet’s apartment.

9. Both Joe and Violet are in the beauty business. Explain.

10. Describe some of the things Harlemites are proud of in their community.

Answers
1. Violet is called the “Bird Lady” because she keeps a parrot and lots of other birds in her apartment. She communicates with the birds and her parrot says “I love you.”

2. Joe and Dorcas’ relationship is labeled “spooky” because it was unusual and unnatural. There was more than a 30 year difference in their ages. After Joe shot Dorcas he cried everyday about it and was unable to resume a normal life. To protect him, Dorcas refused to name Joe as the person who shot her. After her death, the love continued and became more intense.

3. Alice Manfred doesn’t want the police involved because the police have traditionally been an enemy of the African-American community. The...

(The entire section is 580 words.)