Kindred, Week 3

Welcome to Week 3 of the Online Book Club discussion of Kindred.

Did you enjoy reading this section? It was interesting to see how Dana reacted being in the past for so long. This was definitely her longest time traveling trip. Were you stressed wondering whether or not she would find Kevin? I couldn't believe how long they were separated in his world. Five years is a long time to be apart from a spouse! Did any part of you think that Kevin might stay at the plantation? It sure would have made it easier to find him again if he had just stayed in one place, but I don't blame him for moving North. 

At the beginning of this section, Alice and Rufus and Alice's husband are all fighting, and it is not a good situation. Naively, I hoped that the union between Rufus and Alice was a pleasant one. I hoped that Dana's interactions with Rufus might have helped him to grow up to be more kind, but I guess she really didn't spend that much time with him, so it makes sense that she wasn't able to completely change him out of the views of the time. 

Did you ever believe that Rufus would send letters to Kevin? I thought it was pretty obvious that Rufus had no desire to see Dana leave. He belittled her in this section and said he would never want to be with her, but he also seems like he can't live without her. I was so relieved when we found out that Kevin was going to come and get Dana. I was really afraid that they were going to continue to be separated from each other. Did you think that Weylin showed himself to be more honorable than Rufus in this section when he was willing to write to Kevin? It was interesting that Weylin has not shown himself to be a kind man, but he still thought that Rufus should honor his promise to write to Kevin, even if that meant the plantation was going to lose Dana and all of the work she was doing. Why do you think it was so important to him that Rufus keep his promise? 

Were you surprised by how much Rufus's actions towards Dana have changed since the beginning of the book? He is so cruel to her, even while showing that he does love her and depends on her. I was really surprised by the way that Rufus changed as he grew. I thought he was a little bit of a likeable character in the beginning of the book, but as the narrative goes on, he loses any likeability. I don't blame Dana for wanting to escape the plantation, and I think the fact that she was caught and whipped was important because it showcased the true experience of enslaved people. It was sad to see her rebellious spirit leave after she was whipped. 

Do you think it was right when Dana convinced Alice to be with Rufus? I think going to Rufus peacefully was Alice's only real option--he would have taken her either way, so she might as well not get beaten to a pulp in the process, but do you think Dana had an invested interest since she wouldn't exist if Rufus and Alice had never had children together? 

At the end of the section, Kevin and Dana are reunited, and presumably, they are going to travel back to the future together because something heavy lands on Dana right before she loses consciousness. I think that has to be Kevin, right? How do you think Dana and Kevin are going to be able to be together in the present time after all that Kevin has experienced without Dana in the past? Do you think their relationship will survive? 

Before you go, check out the video below in which Octavia E. Butler talks about Science Fiction. 

Thanks for following along this week! I hope you're able to finish the book for next week. I can't wait to hear from you in the comments.