Study Guide

The View from Saturday Principles

By E. L. Konigsburg

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If there's one thing The View from Saturday teaches us, it's that principals—like the threatening principal of Knightsbridge—don't always act with principles. And, sure, The Souls don't always, either. Nadia leaves Ethan out of Disney World; Julian gives into the impulse to show up Hamilton Knapp. But for the most part, these are a seriously principled group of kids. They always operate according to some sort of moral code: What is kind? What is right? No wonder they become the teacher's pets.

Questions About Principles

  1. How does Ethan know to bring a present to the first tea party? And how does everyone else seem to know that, too? What is the role of "good manners" in The View from Saturday?
  2. Does each character seem to act according to a different fundamental principle, or do they all share the same basic convictions?
  3. Why does Julian break his rule about not showing off his magic?

Chew on This

In The View from Saturday, The Souls form a strong team because each of them knows the difference between right and wrong.

The fact that Hamilton's not chosen for the Bowl team suggests that Konigsburg believes morals matter more than facts.

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