Key Questions (Answers)
Creative tasks and first results
Key Questions for the analysis of the film and the discussion in class:
The main character Erik is the only student who succeeds in his rebellion against conditions at Stjärnsberg. After the incident in the school dining room when Erik is beaten up by Silverhielm, Pierre asks Erik in an uneasy and slightly frightened voice, “Who are you, Erik?” Try to answer this question.
What do you think Pierre appreciates about Erik and vice versa?
What reasons could the stepfather have for beating Erik?
What do you think about the mother’s way of dealing with the problem? What could she have done differently?
How does Erik turn the “Saturday-Sunday” punishment into something positive?
How do the teachers react to what is going on at the school? What do you think of the way they handle the situation? What motives could they have?
Is there a winner in this story? Give reasons for your answer.
Compare the prologue and the epilogue. In what way has Erik changed?
Life at the school is very much based on oppression of the younger and weaker students and respect for the older and stronger ones, which creates an atmosphere of constant fear and repression. In what way could this affect the results in school? What are your ideas of “a good teacher” and “a good school”?
What method does Pierre recommend in order to end the use of violence at the school? Can you think of examples where this method has worked?
Erik is in conflict with himself about the use of physical strength, in other words: violence, to solve problems. At the same time the film deals with our attraction to violence and action. Does the film give any answers to the question of how to deal with violence?
Are there situations in which violence is justified?