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4.5.5: Reading and Review Questions

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    1. In “To the First Slave Ship,” how does Sigourney engage sympathy for the nameless blacks held as prisoned freight in the slave ship? What hope or consolation, if any, does the speaker offer the slaves?
    2. In “To the First Slave Ship,” how does Sigourney use personification and to what effect?
    3. In “Indian Names,” how does Sigourney address the cultural appropriation of Native American “names” for places now part of (white) America? Why do forests, waterfalls, lakes, and rivers have words to express the absence of Native Americans in places where they once lived and the phantom chieftain appearing before the farmer only groan? What’s the effect of this difference in terms of communication?
    4. How does nature become a symbol for Native American Indians (now passed away) in “Indian Names?”
    5. How does Sigourney characterize, or give character, to trees in “Fallen Forests?” What is the overall effect of this characterization? How does Sigourney contrast the relationship that trees have with Americans/ humans as opposed to the relationship that Americans/humans have with trees? Why?

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