Study Guide

Cutting for Stone Compassion and Forgiveness

By Abraham Verghese

Compassion and Forgiveness

Let's be real: a lot of mega-depressing stuff goes down in this novel: suffering, death, abandonment, violence. All that pain and chaos could cause the characters to become embittered, expecting the worst of others and taking what's theirs.

But that's not what happens. In fact, it's just the opposite: Cutting for Stone's characters look inside themselves at every turn and find a way to identify with the people around them. They are compassionate toward those who are hurting as well as toward those who hurt others. It even seems to be the secret to these characters' success.

Questions About Compassion and Forgiveness

  1. Do you think that Dr. Thomas Stone ever forgives himself for his role in Sister Mary Joseph Praise's death?
  2. What makes Marion finally forgive his father?
  3. How do the Missing doctors show compassion toward their patients?

Chew on This

The novel is about forgiving the unforgiveable.

Cutting for Stone shows that it is more important to care about others than oneself.