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Charlotte's Web

Charlotte's Web

by E. B. White

The Home Theme

For a pig, Wilbur experiences quite a few "homes" over time. Check them out:

(1) The Arable home. His first place!
(2) The Zuckerman barn.
(3) The pigpen at the County Fair, for a little while.
(4) The Zuckerman barn again. 

But what makes each of these homes a true home? Some of these digs are temporary, and some are more permanent. But in each of them, Wilbur finds something or someone to make him feel at home. Whether it's Fern or Charlotte or a familiar smell, Wilbur finds a way to have that homey feel. In Charlotte's Web, home is more about the friends you have than the place you're sleeping. (Of course, having a warm manure pile doesn't hurt.)

Questions About The Home

  1. For Wilbur, what ingredients make up a home? Is home a physical building? Or a feeling? Or is it both?
  2. How do you think the baby spiders' ideas about home compare with Wilbur's ideas?
  3. Do the animals get to choose where their home is? How so?
  4. Does home have to be in just one place or can it move around?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

The novel argues that a "home" is a physical place. For Wilbur, home is the Zuckerman barn and always will be.

The novel argues that a "home" is a feeling you get. For Wilbur, home is with his friends, no matter where they are.

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