Study Guide
Thurber's "The Owl Who Was God"
You can find the story here.

Do not read further in this study guide until you have read the piece a couple of times.  When you've done that, give some thought to the following questions.  Of course you'll find it useful to return to the text often.

(1)  What are some of the things that strike you as witty and humorous about this little story?

(2)  What familiar saying does Thurber suggest a new twist on when he comes to state a moral for his story?  What do you think is his point in doing so?

(3)  If we take into account the fact that Thurber published this little story at the beginning of the 1940's, what particular situations come to mind as ones that Thurber was probably expecting his original (American) readership to recognize the story as pointing to?

(4)  Here's a riddle: "What do owls mean?"

Interested in some more Thurber?  One our website you'll find these.  We'll be taking them up later in the course, but you can peek at them now if you like.  Enjoy! The first two of these are closely related, in inspiration, to "The Owl Who Was God."  The third seems to be of a wholly different cut of cloth.  It is concerned with some themes favorite to Thurber that do not show up in the other three.  But, if you think about it, there are some important common themes nevertheless.

  Suggestions are welcome.  Please send your comments to .

   Contents copyright © 2000 by Lyman A. Baker.

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  This page last updated 20 August 2000.