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Dicey's Song

Dicey's Song

by Cynthia Voigt

Poverty Theme

Poverty wears on Dicey and her family like nothing else in the novel. Throughout Dicey's Song, our heroine implies that they lost their mother to poverty, and are in danger of losing each other to poverty, too. Nevertheless, with Gram's help, the family manages to trudge through the difficult times, and to accept help when it's offered by kind friends.

Questions About Poverty

  1. Why does Gram go on a spending spree with Dicey, when she’s so worried about money all the time?
  2. Do you think Dicey actually wants anything in the mall, or is she so shut down to her own desires, due to the necessity of taking care of others, that she wouldn’t recognize materialism if it hit her in the face?
  3. Why does Gram accept piano lessons and money from Mr. Lingerle despite her distaste of charity? 
  4. Can we really chalk up Momma's breakdown to poverty and poverty alone? Or was there something else afoot?

Chew on This

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

Momma’s life might have had a much different outcome if she’d been wealthy.

Pride is more dangerous than poverty, and that's a lesson Gram sorely needs to learn.

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