Study Guide

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand Principles

By Helen Simonson

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The Major is a man of principles. He has strong beliefs on what is right: standing up for a lady, for example, or having a coordinating tea set. He also has strong beliefs on what is wrong like selling out a village for personal profit or skipping Christmas with family. We're not sure what his military career was like, but the time we spend with him in Major Pettigrew's Last Stand is a daily battle of morals that involves taking a stand for what is right and attempting to strike down—in a gentlemanly fashion, of course—what is wrong.

Questions About Principles

  1. What are the Major's major principles?
  2. Why do the Major and Mrs. Ali want to convince Abdul Wahid to relax his principles? Does he relax them?
  3. Does Roger have any principles at all? If so, what are they? If not, why is he so different from his father?
  4. How are the principles of the American characters (Sandy, Ferguson) different from those of the British characters?

Chew on This

Principles vary wildly in the families depicted in this this book. Both the Major and Roger and Mrs. Ali and Abdul Wahid have extremely different values.

The Major tells Abdul Wahid to relax his principles, but the Major ends up taking his own advice by the end of the book and focusing on what he truly believes in—Mrs. Ali.

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