The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
Study Questions & Essay Topics
1. Christopher employs a number pictographs—drawings, maps, and figures—over the course of his narrative. Identify a key pictograph in the novel, describe how Christopher uses it, and explain what insight it grants into his character.
2. Christopher’s condition causes him to see the world in a very subjective way, and as a result the reader may often interpret events differently than Christopher does. What role does this difference between Christopher’s understanding of events and the reader’s understanding of events play in the novel?
3. To what extent is Christopher’s condition responsible for the conflicts that arise in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time?
1. Christopher quotes Mother as saying that his behavior would “drive her to an early grave.” Citing evidence from the text, to what extent does Christopher feel responsible for Mother’s “death”? Do her letters and eventual reappearance change how he feels?
2. Think of the novel as narrated in the third person, instead of by Christopher. Describe how this change would affect our views of the characters and the emotional impact of the novel.
3. Christopher appears to believe in always acting logically. Does Christopher always behave logically, and what does this tell us about his character?
4. Describe the significant ways in which Christopher’s character has and has not changed over the course of the novel.