World War Z
by Max Brooks
World War Z Questions
- World War Z has around forty different perspective characters telling their individual stories, and we're not even counting the Interviewer.
- What's the purpose of having so many different characters from so many different places? Why do you think this story-telling method was chosen? Don't forget to snatch some evidence for your answer from the book.
- Back to those forty-three different characters: what do you think are the advantages to having so many perspective characters? What about locations? Any disadvantages? Based on your answer from the above question, how well do you think this story-telling method supports its intended purpose?
- What kind of role do you feel gender plays in World War Z? Do you notice a difference in how the women's stories played out versus the men's? If yes, how? If no, explain why not.
- Find an example or two of religion being shown as a positive force in the novel. Then find some examples of its negative effects. Do a little comparing and contrasting. Based on this, what role do you think religion plays in the novel?
- The Interviewer argues in Chapter 1 that "if there is a human factor that should be removed, let it be my own" (1.1.5). How do you see the Interviewer removing his "human factor" from the story? Do you notice any instances where his human factor pops up? Based on these instances, what purpose do you think the Interviewer character serves in the novel? If you don't see any instances, then explain how this is accomplished and why it matters to the novel.
- It's create-a-character time! Create your own character for World War Z by addressing a job, ethnicity, or location that Brooks did not include. Structure the character's story and include at least the following criteria: timeline; challenges brought about by new location, job, or ethnicity; survival method; events; and ultimate fate. If you're feeling that creative urge, you could even write the story.
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