Discussion Questions for Rebecca CHs 7 – 12

Discussion Questions for Group 7: MDF, EG, and AT

1. “You see,” she said, snapping the top, and walking down the stairs, “you are so very different from Rebecca” (107).

Beatrice makes this comment after meeting the narrator for the first time. Throughout the section, the differences between Rebecca and the narrator are repeatedly mentioned and implied. What does this say about Rebecca? Why do you think everyone makes such a point of noting the differences between Rebecca and the narrator?

2. “I was sitting in Rebecca’s chair, I was leaning against Rebecca’s cushion, and the dog had come to me and laid his head upon my knee because that had been his custom, and he remembered, in the past, she had given sugar to him there” (79).

How does this statement reinforce the narrator’s feelings of being “second best” to a dead woman? What are other examples of the narrator’s insecurities? How do these insecurities affect her relationship with Maxim?

This entry was posted in Character Analysis, Daphne Du Maurier, Rebecca, relationships. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Discussion Questions for Rebecca CHs 7 – 12

  1. MP says:

    In regards to the second question, the heroine is always following in the shadows of Rebecca. She is terrified to bring up mention of the past and is unable to make Manderley her own home. She attempts to make her own routine when first arriving but falls into what the staff tells her Rebecca used to do. When bringing in flowers she can not place them in her desired spot, but places them again where the staff said Rebecca used to do. While everyone talks of how beautiful and amazing Rebecca was, the heroine shrinks back becoming more invisible. All of her desires are aimed to please Maxim and stay in his good graces. She is scared to do anything independently and falling into Rebecca’s shadow.

  2. AC says:

    In response to the first question, I think that everyone makes a point of mentioning the difference between the narrator and Rebecca because they want her to know what a surprise she it. She is nothing like Rebecca and this puts a weight on the narrator, causing her to begin questioning herself. She knows that she is “low class” and now she has everyone else noticing it. Beatrice’s statement shows that Rebecca was the narrator’s opposite. I think this in itself makes the narrator question why Maxim chose her, and makes her wonder if she can fill the shoes of the former Mrs. de Winter.

  3. RT says:

    1) I think everyone keeps mentioning the differences between Rebecca and the narrator because they are surprised at how different the both of them are. It seems as though Rebecca was a lot more prominent in leading the way things were run around the house, but the narrator does not want to put her relationships in jeopardy with the household just yet so she lets Beatrice do her job. Even though the narrator begins to feel threatened by these comparisons, Beatrice and other members in the house seem to show a sign of relief for the narrator’s less bold nature. They are so used to Rebecca’s leader-like qualities that the narrator’s opposite demeanor throws them off guard.

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