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Thursday, May 19, 2011


  1. If I were more interested, I might go back through the chapters (especially since chapter 9) and see if there's a theme for each.  If this chapter has a theme, or at least a motif, what is it?
  2. I'm curious about Kim's religiosity.  Certainly the general quagmire of deities and zealots, gates and roadways make things difficult--or at least confusing--for one unsure, and Kim, in his capacity of wanderer and pretender and, at least in the past, beggar, bring him to at least feign to believe any number of things.  When he speaks with the farmer and his fevered son, he demonstrates a level of personal reform (explanation?), certanily borne of his sahib's education, or at least of three year's maturation, and offers to endorse the farmer and son to the Lama (Kim's Lama) for healing (though Kim will ultimately perform the rite, such as it is).  Does he really believe the Lama might heal the boy or anyone, for that matter?  And, more generally, what of the tendency of the desperate wandering from one holy man to the next, regardless of creed or god, searching for a miracle (if one god can't or won't perform the desired blessing)?  Isn't that a little like a sports fan picking a different team just because his is losing, and worse, picking randomly because anyone is better than the one he was just with?
  3. "Where there is no eye, there is no caste."
  4. The word has been officially used now: Spies.  What of it?
  5. What is "The Game"?

(O, wherefore art thou, Dramatic Tension?)


  1. 1. I think that the theme is Kim becoming an adult, but I don't see any fundamental change really. He's a lot smarter and a bit more cautious, but he's still the same manipulative guy he was all along.
    2. I'm pretty sure that Kim's an atheist or agnostic. The whole healing thing is a rouse. The way that he actually heals him is science. And, on what you're saying about trying to get one healing after another, I agree with you a bit, but at the same time, in a world without modern medicine, I can't blame someone for trying anything--everything--to save his son.
    4. Still not sure.
    5. Good question. One of the enduring perplexities of this book. My guess is that it has something to do with the trade of precious stones and perhaps opium, which we've seen a lot of throughout the book. Some sort of smuggling ring, though, I think.

  2. 1. Motif-wise, there was magic in the last chapter, and healing in this, though not the multi-faceted potential "healing" could possibly represent. Oh well. And you bring up a good point: I want to know if Kim will CHANGE.
    2. I agree. He seems entirely immune to all the religious stuff all around him. It's just like dialect and clothing and skin color to him--another element to the various cultures he's so expert at negotiating. And I certainly don't blame someone for trying anything and everything to save their son, but their's a wishy-washiness there that's a little tough for me to swallow. To me it stands to reason that loyalty to a god is more likely to bring about results from that god. At the same time, how (*wink*) could I be a Mormon and not support those who are looking for a new religion? I don't know, though. It's a tenuous balance for me.
    4, 5. These seem like they should go together, but there is so much of the underworld that Kim is involving himself in that how could he really by a governmental spy? One more thing (this and Kim's character arc) that is only JUST keeping me tied to this thing.


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