‘Shawshank’ | Questions | 10 i karakter

Part one:
1. Where and when does the story take place?
2. Comment on the narrative point of view of the text.
3. Characterize the narrator Red. (add Red to list of characters at the end of this document)
4. Is the description of the narrator positive or negative? How is this effect achieved?
5. Describe the jail seen from Red’s point of view.
6. Characterize Andy Dufresne. (add him to the list of characters)
7. Describe the crime that Andy allegedly committed, and comment on the way in which his trial is pictured.
8. Find at least 3 reasons why Andy was found guilty.
9. Comment on the story with the bird (p26). What is the purpose of including this incident?

Part two
1) Describe the prison (please find specific examples in the text).
2) Sum up on the new things we learn about Andy, and add these to your list.
3) Who are the sisters? Characterize these (add them to your list of characters)
4) Account for the development in the sisters’ way of treating their victims.
5) How does Andy react to being raped
6)When and why do the sisters stop raping him?

1. Describe the introduction of the movie .
2. What is the effect of the music?
3. Characterize Andy’s behavior in court – which impression do you get of him?
4. Sound: we hear the DA talking when we see Andy in front of the house – effect?
5. How is the introduction different from the book?
6. Why are the sex scenes introduced?
7. What happens next? Introduced why?
8. Is Red the narrator in the movie as well?
9. Describe the arrival at the prison. Music?
10.What is your impression of the prison guards?
11.When Andy enters the building, the camera tilts. What is the effect of this?

Part three
1)Describe the incident with Rita Hayworth. Look her up on the Internet.
2) Why is the remark on the bars included in connection with the description of the Rita Hayworth poster? What does this tell you about the jail?
3)Why are the guards referred to as “screws”?
4)Describe life in prison as it has been presented so far.
5)Comment on the description of the jail as a “pressure-cooker”. Is this appropriate, do you think?
6)Comment on the statement in the text that, “In prison, every con’s a nigger” (p44). What does this mean?
7)Describe the incident on the roof.
8)How does Red see this incident?
9)What do we learn about Andy in this part of the text? (p39/40) (add to your list).
10) What do we learn about Red? (p39)
11) Explain the function of remarks like “But I never knew just how persistent Andy Dufresne could be until much later.” (p40), “And he did understand it. The way it turned out, he understood a lot more than I did – more than any of us did.” (p48)

Part four
1)Comment on the new info we get on Andy (p48).
2)Why do all the cons seem to remember being on Andy’s crew that night?
3)Describe the destiny of Brooks Hatlen (p49). What does Red mean when he says that the state got its own back on Broksie?
4)Comment on Andy’s efforts as a librarian.
5)What is an angel (p52t)?
6)Why is Andy described as a “pet financial wizard”??
7) Comment on Andy’s description of the outside world contrary to life within the walls (p53)
8) Comment on Andy’s description of the inmates’ choices (53b)
9) Find elements of suspense in today’s text.
10) Characterise Norton
11) In what way does Norton reinvent the business in the prison?
12) Why does Andy choose to participate in this?

Part five
1)Who is Tommy Williams
2)Comment on the incident in the laundry room
3)What sort of story does Tommy tell Andy?
4)How does Andy react to this?
5)Comment on the characterization of El Blatch (p 61)
6)How does Red explain the fact that the story does not really fit? (p 63)
7)How does the warden react to Andy’s story?

Part six
1)Describe the penal system of Maine in the 17th century.’
2)Describe the penal system today.
3)Why is this comparison included?
4) In what way has Andy changed during his time in solitary?
5) How does Norton react when he finally agrees to see Andy?
6) Why did Tommy choose to make a deal with Norton?
7)Why has Norton transferred Tommy?
8)In what way does he treat Andy?
9)How does Red perceive all the changes in Andy?

Part seven
1)In what way is the year 1967 special? (p73)
2)What are Andy’s plans for the future?
3)How has he managed to set things up financially? (p77)
4)How does Red react to this? (p77)
5)Why doesn’t Andy hire a lawyer – he has enough money?
6)Comment on Andy’s description of Red. Why does this make Red feel free? (p79)
7)Mention some of the stories of escape. Are these realistic?
8)What is Red’s suggestion to Andy?

Part eight
1)Account for the details in connection with Andy’s escape from the prison: facts vs Red’s version of the incident
2)How would you characterize Andy at this point in the story?
3)How does Andy’s escape affect the warden?
4) Explain the last line of today’s text: “He was a good nigger”.

Part nine
1)Account for Red’s description of Andy’s feelings and thoughts in connection with the hole in the wall.
2)Why did he not leave right away?
3)Why is this story about Red?
4)Describe Red’s initial feelings when leaving the prison, and describe his life on parole and what it tells us about the prison/post-prison experience (p 102)
5)Why doesn’t he return to jail?
6)How does Red spend his spare time?
7)How does he react when he finds Andy’s letter?
8)Comment on the ending of the story.
9)What does Red mean when he says: “you get busy living or get busy dying”?
10) What is your opinion of the story? Please substantiate your answer.

After reading
Discussion points
1) Is this a typical Stephen King story?
2) How would you define the genre of the story?
3) How is Andy different from the other inmates in Shawshank?
4) In what way is “hope” central to this story? And friendship?

In 1949 Andy Dufrense asked if Red could smuggle Rita Hayworth into the prison for him. Andy came to Shawshank in 1948, and he was thirty years old.

The story takes place in northern America in Maine. It takes place at Shawshank, where Red meets Andy. The story takes place in the late 1970’ - around 1978. But all in all the story takes place over a long period, with a lot of flashbacks.


The story is told in a first person narrator which means that the narrator is not omniscient. Red, who is a prisoner at Shawshank, is telling the story of Andy Dufresne and how he ended up in prison. So, the story is told from Red’s point of view, and the readers are let in Red’s knowledge.

Because of this single point of view, whereby there may be some information in the story that is unknown to the narrator, first-person narratives can add an element of foreboding.

This works really particularly well for stories like this, which contains an element of suspense. The Shawshank Redemption is a really good example of the use of first person narration as being an effective feature to draw the audience into the story world.

This story has been really successful in humanizing a tale set in the dehumanizing environment of a prison.


Red is the narrator of the story. A convicted murderer serving a life sentence. Red writes the story, to try to make sense of his friendship with Andy.

Not only because of the friendship, but also his life in prison and his hopes for the future. Red is the key figure inside prison. He is a lifeline to the outside world, and he can smuggle almost any into the prison.

Red is remorseful and extremely guilty about his crime. He however has a calm, peaceful and talkative disposition. Due to this, Red is popular in prison and he is able to mingle with other prisoners at Shawshank.

He is extremely likeable. Red has accepted his condition as being a criminal and he has no hope for a better life. He is a triple murderer.

He killed his wife, the neighbor woman and her infant son. Red came to Shawshank as a twenty-year-old, and he has been in there for almost forty years.

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