Topic outline

  • General

    v Watership Down

    This allegorical story follows a warren of adventurous rabbits who are forces from their home by real estate development. In the course of their journey, they have to learn how to handle new experiences, develop new methods for handling crises, and avoid numerous enemies. Richard Adams originally began telling the story of Watership Down to his two young daughters during long car trips. it took years to write, and when it was finally published, the book sold over a million copies in record time in both the United Kingdom and the United States.

    Watership Down
    is not a sweet fable about bunnies; it's a tale in which characters die or become injured, and these facts of life are not sugar-coated. Adams said of his writing style, "I derived early the idea that one must at all costs tell the truth to children, not so much about mere physical pain and fear, but about the really unanswerable things—what [writer] Thomas Hardy called 'the essential grimness of the human situation."

    • Setting: the Hampshire district in central England, where the author still lives
    • Protagonist: Hazel, leader of the rabbits who looks for a safe home
    • Antagonist: enemies of the rabbits, including humans
    • Conflict: overcoming differences and developing a sense of trust that will enable the rabbits to create a successful civilization.
    • Themes touch upon loyalty, trust, friendship, courage, acceptance, brain vs. brawn, and the ideal society

    • Topic 1

      Chapter One r

      The chapter introduces the main characters of the story, including Fiver and Hazel. The reader also learns about the structure of the warren.

      rFor your Journal

      Create a Word Document to begin keeping track of Fiver's role throughout the novel. Save it, as you will be updating it periodically.
    • Topic 2

      Chapters Two and Three

      We are introduced to Bigwig, one of the Owsla, as unseen dangers are explained.
      Additional rabbits are introduced. The reader gets a sense of additional discontent in the Owsla.

    • Topic 3

      Chapters Four and Five tt

      Hazel's leadership qualities are developing very quickly along with the rabbits' trust in him. Hazel decides that it will help the rabbits to keep their spirits up if they hear a story of El-ahrairah. This begins a pattern of storytelling which provides tradition as well as cultural behaviors to emulate.
    • Topic 4

      Chapters Six and Seven

      Dandelion tells a creation/gift-giving story in order to help the rabbits continue in their endeavors.

    • Topic 5

      Chapters Eight and Nine y , i

      Blackberry and Bigwig are feeling indispensable during this chapter as they help to solve a large obstacle the rabbits are facing. Blackberry becomes the "intellect" of the group, while Bigwig uses his strength. The relationship between Hazel and Bigwig continues to develop as they work together to attack a crow and drive it off.
    • Topic 6

      Chapters Ten - Twelve y

      Bigwig is fully committed to Hazel's leadership and prevents the rebellion of others who aren't. Hazel is pronounced a definite Chief Rabbit. Now that a leader of their civilization is established, a home continues to be the next quest. The field is their first attempt, but there are obstacles in the way.
    • Topic 7

      Chapters Thirteen - Seventeenss

      The Cowslip rabbits have been living in a state of denial. Rather than solve their problem, they have become a victim of it. They have also become hardened to the idea of death and no longer bother to protect each other.

    • Topic 8

      Chapters Eighteen -Twenty-two ff

      Part II begins. After passing through numerous difficulties, including fighting off a bunch of rats in a barn, the rabbits reach Watership Down. At last the rabbits have found safety, and in this new home, they are free to make their own rules and customs. They have learned that their lives depend on their ability to work together, taking full advantage of each other's special abilities.

    • Topic 9

      Chapters Twenty-three to Twenty-sevenff

      The rabbits have advanced their willingness to communicate with other creatures. All of the rabbits at Watership Down are bucks. Hazel points out that all their work is for nothing and they are all doomed in the long run unless they find some does.

    • Topic 10

      Chapters Twenty-eight to Thirty-two

      Fiver's change in status is becoming quite apparent. Holly speaks of the cleverness of Blackberry and Fiver in the same sentence! Hazel no longer hesitates about giving orders or taking the leadership role, even when it involves scolding one of his companions.

    • Topic 11

      Chapters Thirty-three to Thirty-seven ee

      Bigwig is seen as not only a great fighter and leading partner, but also as an actor. The reader learns how General Woundwort grew to be such a vicious rabbit. Thunder symbolizes the fear and anxiety over "the plan".

    • Topic 12

      Chapters Thirty-eight to Forty-two g

      (You supply the summary on a Word Document.)
    • Topic 13

      Chapters Forty-three to the End! dd

      (Again, you supply the summary for these chapters!)
    • Topic 14

      And Now...
    • Topic 15

      h Leadership in Cinema
    • Topic 16

      Character Match-up ff