Study Guide

Passion Dreams, Hopes, and Plans

By Alice Munro

Dreams, Hopes, and Plans

She was not going to be able to go to college, and anyway no college course required such a full plate. Why was she doing it? Did she have any plans? (27)

The idea that there should always be an end goal to learning implies that learning is only useful when it leads to something concrete. Do you agree with this, or is learning for the sake of learning just as valid? 

Even the man in charge of all learning in that place did not believe that learning had to do with life. (30)

It sounds like the high school principal might have lost his "passions" a long time ago if he thinks like this. What kind of learning is generally perceived as useful? Does learning have to do with life? 

He would be handsome, like Maury. Passionate, like Maury. Pleasurable physical intimacies would follow. (65)

Everything happens pretty much as Grace hopes, yet it isn't enough. She doesn't love her Prince Charming, which is an important part of the equation, and also one that is not really fleshed out in fairytales very often—a woman's own capacity to love and desire, rather than simply be rescued. 

</em>In those days, it was enough money to insure her a start in life. (317)

You could argue that the check is just as much a reflection of the Traverses' hopes as it is a representation of Grace's decision to keep living her life.