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Sisyphus, Cancer, and other awesome things that happen in The Fault in our Stars (TFioS) Brought to you by Mr. B.

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Presentation on theme: "Sisyphus, Cancer, and other awesome things that happen in The Fault in our Stars (TFioS) Brought to you by Mr. B."— Presentation transcript:

1 Sisyphus, Cancer, and other awesome things that happen in The Fault in our Stars (TFioS) Brought to you by Mr. B

2 Thyroid Cancer (What Hazel has) Cancer Cancer is the body’s own cells that replicate in an unwanted and dangerous fashion. Not like a virus. You can’t catch cancer.

3 Anaplastic Thyroid Cancer (ATC) The most malignant type of Thyroid cancer 14% survival rate If Hazel says she has an “almost 20%” chance of survival it is safe to assume she has ATC All of the others have over 70% chance of survival

4 The Sword of Damocles Pandering to his king, Damocles (a common man) exclaimed that, as a great man of power and authority surrounded by magnificence, Dionysius was truly extremely fortunate. Dionysius then offered to switch places with Damocles, so that Damocles could taste that very fortune first hand. Damocles quickly and eagerly accepted the king's proposal. Damocles sat down in the king's throne surrounded by every luxury, but Dionysius arranged that a huge sword should hang above the throne, held at the pommel only by a single hair of a horse's tail. Damocles finally begged the tyrant that he be allowed to depart, because he no longer wanted to be so fortunate.

5 What do we get from comparing our position to other peoples’? How does Hazel “compete with the other support group members? Is there a connection between Hazel’s comparison and Damocles’ decision to sit on the throne?

6 Osteosarcoma (What Augustus has) It is the most common histological (microscopically studied) form of primary bone cancer. Long-term survival probabilities for osteosarcoma have improved dramatically during the late 20th century and approximated 68% in Flip a coin.

7 The Philosophy of John Green Augustus Waters fears __________ Oblivion Definition noun 1. the state of being completely forgotten or unknown: a former movie star now in oblivion. 2. the state of forgetting or of being oblivious: the oblivion of sleep. 3. official disregard or overlooking of offenses; pardon; amnesty.

8 Natalie Portman in V for Vendetta For an idea of what Hazel looks like to Augustus

9 A Hamartia is… A fatal flaw, as Hazel explains Remember ~ What was Othello’s hamartia? Pride Is Hazel’s fatal flaw something she can change? The word “Hamartia” has two definitions actually, A fatal character flaw A pre-tumorous mass in a cancer patient…

10 The Unlit Cigarette Metaphor Why does Augustus hold an unlit cigarette in his mouth? Why would this metaphor appeal to him? How do you prove you are alive to yourself?

11 Chapter 2

12 Under-oxygenated Hazel has to wear a Nasal Cannula to get oxygen into her lungs. For those of you with braces. Did you think about how your braces looked a lot after you got them put on? How do you think Hazel deals with wearing the cannula in public?

13 Chapter 4

14 Cholera Although cholera may be life-threatening, prevention of the disease is normally straightforward if proper sanitation practices are followed. In developed countries, due to nearly universal advanced water treatment and sanitation practices, cholera is no longer a major health threat. Why is the Anna Foundation (from AIA) an ironic foundation?

15 How does TFioS’s epigraph and author’s note connect to the fake book An Imperial Affliction and Hazel’s understanding of the world?

16 Epigraph: (DEF: an engraved inscription on a building or monument; a quotation set at the beginning of a literary work in order to suggest its theme) As the tide washed in, the Dutch Tulip Man faced the ocean: “Conjoinder poisoner concealer revelator. Look at it, rising up and rising down, taking everything with it.” Author’s Note: This is not so much an Author’s note as an Author’s reminder of what was printed in small type a few pages ago: This book is a work of fiction. I made it up. Neither novels nor their readers benefit from attempts to divine whether any facts hide inside a story. Such efforts attack the very idea that made-up stories can matter, which is sort of the foundational assumption of our species. I appreciate your cooperation in this matter.

17 “Pain demands to be Felt” (p63) Does it?

18 ?s to ponder w/your pen & paper What does it mean when fictional characters talk about fictional characters? When Gus and Isaac are controlling characters in the video game do you remember yourself as a reader? Why is it weird to read a story in a story? Who is writing your story?

19 The Game What does Augustus say when he dies by the grenade in the video game? What does this say about his personal beliefs? What type of person is Augustus Waters? Would you let your daughter date him?

20 Chapter 5

21 Sobriquet A nickname, sometimes assumed, but often given by another. It is usually a familiar name, distinct from a pseudonym assumed as a disguise, but a nickname which is familiar enough such that it can be used in place of a real name without the need of explanation. “Night of the Broken Trophies” p. 64 Allusion – WWII/Holocaust/Germany – Night of the Broken Glass

22 Decoding Mr. Van Houten’s language Hold. Onto. Your. Dictionaries. People. This is going to be a bumpy ride! “our triumphantly digitized contemporaneity” Means: “Our happily accepted recent move to a more technological world with the internet”

23 Sisyphus the Hamster p.70 The Myth of Sisyphus Super Sparknotes version Dude angers Zeus Zeus makes the dude (Sisyphus) roll a rock up a hill forever The rock always rolls back down at the top and Sisyphus must do it again. Wash. Rinse. Repeat. Until the end of time.

24 Why is a hamster like a Greek myth? Good. Question. Sisyphean Definition: A task that can NEVER be completed If you use this word in a sentence Mr. B will mystically appear and high five your immortal soul.

25 Emily Dickinson p.71 There's a certain slant of light, On winter afternoons, That oppresses, like the weight Of cathedral tunes. Heavenly hurt it gives us; We can find no scar, But internal difference Where the meanings are. None may teach it anything, 'Tis the seal, despair,- An imperial affliction Sent us of the air. When it comes, the landscape listens, Shadows hold their breath; When it goes, 't is like the distance On the look of death.

26 “Say your life broke down. The last good kiss/You had was years ago.” p.71 Why would Max Mayhem, or The Blood Approves begin with this quote?

27 Funky Bones and THE BEST PICNIC EVER So… This REALLY exists… So… what’s up with all the orange.

28 Vladimir and Estragon are characters in the play Waiting for Godot (p88) (Spoiler Alert) Godot never shows up. Augustus compares kids who never use their “wish” to these characters. What is he saying?

29 Chapter 6

30 Hazel is Twitterpated Just so you know Etymology twitter +‎ pated, i.e., having one's pate (head) in a twitter (confused). First seen in the Disney movie Bambi. Adjective Twitterpated (comparative more twitterpated, superlative most twitterpated) Smitten or love-struck. Dawwww

31 Why is Hazel a grenade? Who are you a grenade to? Do you have a grenade in your life? I mean Metaphorically! Don’t explode!

32 Chapter 7

33 Van Houten’s response to Augustus’ letter “there is no shortage of fault in our stars” What does Van Houten mean by fault? How can your “stars” be at fault? When Cassius (Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar) says to Brutus, “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, But in ourselves, that we are underlings.” Who is to blame for their problems? How does Van Houten disagree?

34 Chapter 10

35 “How many dead people are there?” What does Augustus say about remembering the dead when they are in the plane? Can you think of fourteen people? Famous or family that you remember and carry with you? Who will you be remembered by? What will you be remembered for?

36 Hazel recites part of a poem she has memorized. This poem is honest in the same way that TFioS has been honest with us, not lying or pretending to be something it is not. Not being a Van Houten and throwing around big words as if they give big answers. This poem is a man’s life and love and feeling. Just squished up into words and ideas so it can live in your head for a minute while we read it.

37 The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock LET us go then, you and I, When the evening is spread out against the sky Like a patient etherized upon a table; Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets, The muttering retreats Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells: Streets that follow like a tedious argument Of insidious intent To lead you to an overwhelming question…. Oh, do not ask, “What is it?” Let us go and make our visit. Sideways words are Mr. B’s notes And comments on the poem What literary device is this?

38 In the room the women come and go Talking of Michelangelo. The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes, The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening, Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains, Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from chimneys, Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap, And seeing that it was a soft October night, Curled once about the house, and fell asleep. This is like a refrain

39 And indeed there will be time For the yellow smoke that slides along the street, Rubbing its back upon the window panes; There will be time, there will be time To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet; There will be time to murder and create, And time for all the works and days of hands That lift and drop a question on your plate; Time for you and time for me, And time yet for a hundred indecisions, And for a hundred visions and revisions, Before the taking of a toast and tea. There will be Little Infinities your whole life…

40 In the room the women come and go Talking of Michelangelo. And indeed there will be time To wonder, “Do I dare?” and, “Do I dare?” Time to turn back and descend the stair, With a bald spot in the middle of my hair— (They will say: “How his hair is growing thin!”) My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin, My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin— (They will say: “But how his arms and legs are thin!”) Do I dare Disturb the universe? In a minute there is time For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse. When you do anything you disturb the universe

41 For I have known them all already, known them all: Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons, I have measured out my life with coffee spoons; I know the voices dying with a dying fall Beneath the music from a farther room. So how should I presume? !!!!!! T.S. Eliot is asking, Who am I to disturb the universe? How can I presume to be that important. Important enough to write poems? Important enough to teach others? Important enough to do anything?

42 And I have known the eyes already, known them all— The eyes that fix you in a formulated phrase, And when I am formulated, sprawling on a pin, When I am pinned and wriggling on the wall, Then how should I begin To spit out all the butt-ends of my days and ways? And how should I presume? Death has eyes sometimes

43 And I have known the arms already, known them all— Arms that are braceleted and white and bare (But in the lamplight, downed with light brown hair!) Is it perfume from a dress That makes me so digress? Arms that lie along a table, or wrap about a shawl. And should I then presume? And how should I begin? How should I begin to respond to the idea of death? In a love poem?

44 Shall I say, I have gone at dusk through narrow streets And watched the smoke that rises from the pipes Of lonely men in shirt-sleeves, leaning out of windows?… I should have been a pair of ragged claws Scuttling across the floors of silent seas. What is a little infinity? What makes a moment a memory? Here T.S. Eliot is giving you his memories.

45 And the afternoon, the evening, sleeps so peacefully! Smoothed by long fingers, Asleep … tired … or it malingers, Stretched on the floor, here beside you and me. Should I, after tea and cakes and ices, Have the strength to force the moment to its crisis? But though I have wept and fasted, wept and prayed, Though I have seen my head (grown slightly bald) brought in upon a platter, I am no prophet—and here’s no great matter; I have seen the moment of my greatness flicker, And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker, And in short, I was afraid. Personification Here Eliot is saying that he knows he will die.

46 And would it have been worth it, after all, After the cups, the marmalade, the tea, Among the porcelain, among some talk of you and me, Would it have been worth while, To have bitten off the matter with a smile, To have squeezed the universe into a ball To roll it toward some overwhelming question, To say: “I am Lazarus, come from the dead, Come back to tell you all, I shall tell you all”— If one, settling a pillow by her head, Should say: “That is not what I meant at all; That is not it, at all.” Can we easily explain death? If we can does that make death worth less? Can a question be more reassuring than an answer?

47 And would it have been worth it, after all, Would it have been worth while, After the sunsets and the dooryards and the sprinkled streets, After the novels, after the teacups, after the skirts that trail along the floor— And this, and so much more?— It is impossible to say just what I mean! But as if a magic lantern threw the nerves in patterns on a screen: Would it have been worth while If one, settling a pillow or throwing off a shawl, And turning toward the window, should say: “That is not it at all, That is not what I meant, at all.” Is it hard to write the Truth with a capital T?

48 No! I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be; Am an attendant lord, one that will do To swell a progress, start a scene or two, Advise the prince; no doubt, an easy tool, Deferential, glad to be of use, Politic, cautious, and meticulous; Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse; At times, indeed, almost ridiculous— Almost, at times, the Fool. Eliot is saying, “I can’t explain death. But I don’t want to be like Hamlet and worry during life.” How much does the Fool in Shakespearean plays understand compared to the other characters?

49 I grow old … I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled. Shall I part my hair behind? Do I dare to eat a peach? I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach. I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each. I do not think that they will sing to me. Inevitably the end of every story.

50 I have seen them riding seaward on the waves Combing the white hair of the waves blown back When the wind blows the water white and black. We have lingered in the chambers of the sea By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown Till human voices wake us, and we drown. While you were here, reading this poem in class, you were in a fiction. A fantasy. A poem. Mentally. Here at the end Eliot lets you go. The fantasy is beautiful and the love is more real than he can do justice in writing. It is always human voices, reality, that ends the story. Reality ends the storyteller.

51 Why does Hazel like this poem? Why does Augustus like this poem? Why does this make Augustus tell Hazel he loves her? What brings people together? Why do most love poems feel fake?

52 Chapter 12

53 Van Houten meeting He may be a great writer but he sucks at being a human being. How would you have reacted to Van Houten’s actions? What does Houten believe about stories? How does he explain himself when he doesn’t answer Hazel’s questions? How does Houten’s ideas about writing differ from John Green’s feelings about writing?

54 “The world is not a wish granting factory.” This book is a work of fiction, but is this message true? Can fiction contain truth? Go back to the author’s note for John Green’s feelings on this question.

55 Otto Frank’s recorded voice How is Hazel like Anne Frank? Her father says, “I must say, I was very much surprised by the deep thoughts that Anne had.” “most parents really don’t know their children” True? False? Why?

56 Infinity “Some infinities are bigger than other infinities” What does this mean? Have you ever been in a moment that lasted forever? Tip: Don’t worry about being sappy. Asking my fiance to marry me is going to last forever in my head. I can hear you going “awww” from college. What moments do you want to last forever?

57 Chapter 18

58 “The only poem I could remember…” (246-47) so much depends upon a red wheelbarrow glazed with rain water beside the white chickens. Red Wheelbarrow by William Carlos Williams And so much depends, upon a blue sky cut open by the branches of the trees above. so much depends upon the transparent G-tube Erupting from the gut of the blue-lipped boy. So much depends on this observer of the universe. ~Hazel

59 Absurdity What if death isn’t epic? What if dying isn’t epic? We aren’t Spartans and Persians fighting for our lives as Gus realizes. What if Absurdity isn’t just a defense mechanism? What if life is absurd AND answers are not easy AND it matters that they are hard to understand?

60 Chapter 20

61 Eulogy A eulogy (from εὐλογία, eulogia, Classical Greek for "good words") is a speech or writing in praise of a person or thing, especially one recently dead or retired. Eulogies are usually delivered by a family member or a close family friend in the case of a dead person. For a living eulogy given in such cases as a retirement, a senior colleague could perhaps deliver it. On occasions, eulogies are given to those who are severely ill or elderly in order to express words of love and gratitude before they pass away.

62 Living Eulogy Waking Ned Devine clip One older man give the Eulogy of his best friend with his friend sitting in the front row to throw off a Priest. Great movie. Great Eulogy too. for-a-friend/ for-a-friend/ Sorry, couldn’t download this video. My internet wizardry only goes so far…

63 What would you want someone to say at your Eulogy? Would you want them to be totally honest? Why or why not? Who’s Eulogy could you give? What would you say about them? Did you like that Isaac and Hazel were honest about their feelings for Augustus in their Eulogies? Do you think these were normal eulogies?

64 ?????? chpt

65 “Pain is like fabric, the stronger it is the more it’s worth.” Is this an Aphorism that you believe? When could this be true? Likely Dr. Barnes could fill you in on important pains that mom’s deal / have dealt with. At 23 I (Mr. B) am not really sure yet. I’ve yet to feel most of the worst pains that a person can feel. There’s still plenty of time for them to happen I think that even though Van Houten sucks at being a good person he may have this right.

66 The Trolley Problem A trolley is hurtling down a track towards five people. You are on a bridge under which it will pass, and you can stop it by dropping a heavy weight in front of it. As it happens, there is a very fat man next to you - your only way to stop the trolley is to push him over the bridge and onto the track, killing him to save five. Should you proceed? What do you think Van Houten would do? What do you think Augustus would do? What do you think Hazel would do? What would you do?

67 What message would you leave if you knew you were going to die? What does Augustus do as his last act of writing? Would you be able to write that letter? I know you write a lot of letters in high school and oftentimes they don’t mean much to you here. It is a great and sad thing that they do not. So much feeling, so much happiness and reassurance can come from a heartfelt letter that you will NEVER be able to send in a text or a FB message. Letter’s PROVE you care in a way that people value. I’m still hoping that Jeannette Walls responds honestly to ours as I type this on my last day with you fellows.

68 “I missed the future” What does Hazel mean by this phrase? Why is death sad/scary? Which do we miss more The past or the future

69 Gus’ Letters “Hazel knows the truth: We’re as likely to hurt the universe as we are to help it, and we’re not likely to do either.” “People will say it’s sad that she leaves a lesser scar, that fewer remember her, that she was loved deeply but not widely. But it’s not sad, Van Houten. It’s triumphant. It’s heroic. Isn’t that the real heroism? Like the doctor’s say: First, do no harm.” “The real heroes anyway aren’t the people doing things; the real heroes are the people NOTICING things, paying attention.”

70 Does Hazel regret meeting Gus? Would you sacrifice happiness to never feel pain? Would you never fall in love so you can never be hurt? Would you never connect to another person so they can’t ever hurt you? On a WAY less intense scale than Hazel, I was quite sad when my last day came at Butler. But it was totally worth the sadness to open up to you guys.


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