Study Guide

The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing: Traitor to the Nation, Volume I: The Pox Party Art and Culture

By M.T. Anderson

Art and Culture

Art and culture—especially music—have everything to do with escaping in Octavian Nothing. You might be thinking, "Oh that means art and culture aren't all that important because they're escapist," but this book shows you how necessary these things are. Art and culture offer potential routes to escape from slavery, and we don't mean just the mental, take-a-trip-to-la-la-land kind of escape. Octavian and his mother's cultured manners and artistic talents give them very real ways of leaving slavery behind.

Questions About Art and Culture

  1. How do art and culture provide ways for Octavian and Cassiopeia to escape slavery?
  2. Is Cassiopeia's femininity a form of art?
  3. What is the relationship between culture and money?
  4. What is the relationship between art and the building of a nation?

Chew on This

Art is great and all, but it's not as important to a nation as a stable, profitable economy.

Art and culture are fundamental to the building of an educated, stable nation.

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