Cone Gatherers Chapters 1&2

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<ul><li> 1. THE CONE-GATHERERS CHAPTERS 1&amp;2 ROBIN JENKINS </li> <li> 2. INTRODUCTION The Cone-Gatherers by Robin Jenkins is set in Scotland during World War II. It is set on the estate of the Runcie-Campbells, a wealthy Scottish family. The action takes place over a few days in Autumn in the forest on the estate. The trees are to be cut down to provide wood for the war effort. The cones from the trees are to be collected before the forest is destroyed so that the trees can be replaced. Brothers Calum and Neil have been sent to do this hard, demanding work. </li> <li> 3. THEMES The main themes in the book are: Good versus Evil Class conflict War Jenkins cleverly uses imagery to convey depth of meaning below the surface: Trees Weather Seasons People </li> <li> 4. CHAPTER ONE In the opening chapter we are introduced to Calum and Neil who are high in the trees gathering cones. It is set during WWII and the forest is to be cut down for wood and needs to be replaced. Thus the reason for gathering cones. We also find out that Calum is very compassionate to animals and is very sensitive to their pain. He has released rabbits from their traps which angers Duror, the main character in the novel. The reader begins to learn of Durors shocking opinions. He hates the brothers, particularly Calum because of his deformity and wants him out of his wood. </li> <li> 5. GOOD - CALUM Calum has a childlike innocence and an affinity with nature Calum cannot understand why animals kill each other He successfully blocks out the war The extent of Calums love of animals is realised when he sees a rabbit in distress Calum is skilled in carving nature </li> <li> 6. EVIL - DUROR Calums compassion for the rabbits angers Duror He vows to get rid of the brothers Duror spies on the brothers his hatred revealed Duror thinks that his obsession with the brothers is a noose of disgust Shocking revelation from Durors childhood. His revulsion of anything imperfect stems from childhood. There is an indication that Duror may act on his feelings of hatred He is obsessed with the brothers and cannot help spying on them Shockingly, Duror supports the Nazi regime He fantasises about murder We become aware that the hatred in Duror will not leave him without tragic consequences </li> <li> 7. CLASS The brothers live in squalid conditions Neil is aware of the vast differences between them and the Runcie-Campbells He questions their living accommodation when there are more suitable, humane solutions </li> <li> 8. SETTING Significance of the war good versus evil, Duror, Calum The silver firs class The cone-gatherers hut class </li> <li> 9. CHAPTER TWO In chapter two we meet Dr. Matheson as Duror is walking home form the woods. He offers Duror a lift home, which for Duror is an inconvenience as he will have to make small talk with the doctor. The doctor seems to be more interested in the lack of food due to the war and is not at all happy about it as he is used to fine food such as venison and whisky. Duror returns home to a desperately unhappy home life. His wife, Peggy, is morbidly overweight and is bedridden. We also meet the dour, hostile motherin-law Mrs Lochie. She blames Duror for her daughters misfortune and wants him to spend more time with her. We are of course, aware that Duror is repelled by anything that is deformed. </li> <li> 10. CHAPTER TWO DUROR Duror meets Dr. Matheson. We can tell he is not happy about having to talk to the doctor Durors wife Peggy is morbidly obese. Why is this so significant? When asked about Peggy he is compared to a tree. What does this tell us about his relationship? The doctor is suspicious that despite Durors stalwart and stoic appearance, something dark lurks in his mind The doctor admires Durors stoic nature Duror is desperately unhappy at home yet he hides his suffering Duror thinks of the cone-gatherers and how he is becoming obsessed Has Duror known that his sanity would, at one time, escape him? </li> <li> 11. DURORS UNHAPPY HOME LIFE Duror wishes that he could be in the miserable hut rather than be at home Mrs Lochie She, like Duror will never show her suffering Mrs Lochie is aware of, and not afraid to comment on, Durors dissatisfaction with his married life Peggy Duror likens Peggy with Calum Peggy and Duror were, at one time, happy </li> <li> 12. DURORS MADNESS Duror has a strong bond with his dogs His dogs then sense the inner turmoil in their masters mind as he fantasises about thrashing them he manages to regain control We first hear of the deer drive and the hatching of the evil plan to create immense suffering for the brothers </li> </ul>