Study Guide

Middlesex Book 3, Chapter 2

By Jeffrey Eugenides

Book 3, Chapter 2


  • Present-day Cal invites Julie Kikuchi for an overnight weekend. They spend the night in separate rooms.
  • Race riots break out in Detroit. Lefty grabs his gun and sets out to defend his diner. Tessie takes Calliope and her older brother, whom we haven't really gotten to know and Cal only calls Chapter Eleven, and hides in the attic as Detroit burns, like Greece did so many years before.
  • Calliope decides to ride her bike down to the Zebra Room to help her father. Detroit is at war; white people and black people and the government are at war.
  • Milton defends the Zebra Room from a looter, but it turns out he knows the looter. It's a black man named Morrison. Milton asks him "What's the matter with you people?" (3.2.68) and Morrison responds, "The matter with us […] is you" (3.2.69).
  • Calliope arrives at the Zebra Room right as someone chucks a Molotov cocktail (not something you order at happy hour) through the window, shouting, "Opa, motherf***er!" (3.2.80).
  • The bomber? Marius Wyxzewixard Challouehliczilczese Grimes.
  • Milton takes Calliope and abandons the bar to the flames. Cal draws our attention to the flag of Detroit, and its motto: "We hope for better things; it will rise from the ashes" (3.2.93).