Part of the district curriculum requires seniors to compare three different versions of the same work. Previously, I’d taught TARTUFFE, and used the written play, a performance of it, and an updated modern-day version of the story. For PURPLE, I have the book and the movie. I just need a third.
Several years ago, the BBC did a radio version of the book, which would have been perfect, but I can’t find it anywhere. The BBC’s web site doesn’t make it available, and it’s nowhere else to be found. (If anyone here knows where to get it, hit me up!) I finally settled on using clips from the Broadway musical, which are widely available.
But how to approach teaching the actual literature?
Internet to the rescue! I found a set of study questions that beautifully divided the book into sections (very handy for reading assignments). I found another site that gave a number of excellent activities and even PowerPoint slides for introducing the novel. I’m using these as springboards.
I’ll have to preview the book heavily. I can already see one set of my students, who are immature for their age, will have problems with the book, which is very explicit. But my other sections should handle it well. I’m looking forward to it. MAUS is already pushing their preconceptions of literature. PURPLE will do it further.
–Steven Harper Piziks