The Life Of Pi English Literature Essay

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Pi lives in India. His father was a zookeeper. In the beginning of the book Pi tells that his suffering left him sad and gloomy. He looks back to his childhood. He also speaks about animal behaviour. He studied zoological and religion, he was a very good student. He discusses about the three-toed sloth. Pi misses the heat of India but loves Canada. He mentions Richard Parker, on the back you read Richard is a tiger.

Pi talks about his stay in a hospital in Mexico. He stayed there for a week. He had a high level of sodium and his potassium was low. Many people in the hospital want to hear his story.

Chapter 2

Description of the author about Pi: "He's a small slim man - no more than five foot five. Dark hair, dark eyes. Hair greying at the temples. Can't be older than forty. Pleasing coffee-coloured complexion." (page 19)

Chapter 3

He is named to a pool. His uncle, Mamaji, was a good swimmer, and talks often about a pool in Paris called Piscine. His official name is Piscine Patel, in the book he is called just Pi. In this chapter he tells a lot about pools. Mamaji has Pi learned to swim.

Chapter 4

Pondicherry entered the Union of India on the first of November in 1954. After that Pondicherry gets a zoo in the Botanical Garden. It was very big. His father sells his hotel and buys the zoo. For Pi the zoo was paradise on earth. Pi says it is the best to visit a zoo with sunrise and sunset, because most animals come to live.

Chapter 5

In this chapter Pi tells about his nicknames. He has a difficult name. Many people thought his name was pissing. That's why he changed his name to Pi on the first day of secondary school.

Chapter 6/7

Pi tells about his best teacher, Mr. Kumar for biology. He's an active communist and an atheist. Mr. Kumar also loves the zoo. When he visits the zoo Pi is too shy to approach him. But Mr. Kumar sees him and starts a conversation. They talk about religion and science. They discuss about politics.

Chapter 8

Pi's father learned him that human are very dangerous. It was on a Sunday morning when his father calls Pi and his brother. He wants to teach them a lesson that may save their lives. He feeds a goat to a tiger. The tiger mangles the goat. It's horrible to see. He shows them also other dangerous animals in the zoo. His mother is angry with father because of this. At the end father shows them guinea pigs, safe animals.

Chapter 9-12

Pi tells about how human can give an animal trust. His father is very good at this. Sometimes animals want to flee. This is not without a reason.

Chapter 13

If a lion kills his trainer it's because he comes in his territory, not because he is hungry. Pi talks about the taming of lions. The trainer must show the animals who's the boss. A circus trainer must enter the lion ring first.

Chapter 14

Socially inferior animals are the ones that make the most strenuous, resourceful efforts to get to know their keepers. This wonder has been observed with big cats, wild sheep, monkeys and many other beasts. It's a fact commonly known in the trade.

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Pi had an aunt, with a traditional mind. When he was a little kid she took him to a temple in Madurai. He liked it very much, and that's why he loves religions. He talks about the reasons why he's Hindu. It's because of all the rituals. He thinks religion is more than rite and ritual. He believes in Brahman and his opinion. In the end of this chapter he tells a story about Krishna and a woman in Toronto. The woman was very dear to his heart. When he told her about Hare Krishnas she understood 'Hairless Christians' because of her French-speaking mind.

Chapter 17

When Pi was fourteen years old he met Jesus Christ. It was on a holiday in Munmar. He visited a Christian school. In the church he meets Father Martin. Father Martin tells Pi about Jesus Christ. Pi has a lot of question. It's hard for him to understand. Most of Pi's question Father Martin answers with: love. After this visit Pi becomes a Christian.

Chapter 18

When Pi was fifteen years old he discovered the Islam. He visited the Muslim quarter. He entered a small shop. In the shop asked a man if he'd like to taste some bread. The bread is doughy but filling. The man also learns Pi how to make the bread. Pi is impressed by the prayer of the man.

Chapter 19

A day later Pi went to see the man again. He asked about his religion: Islam. He went to the mosque.

Chapter 20

The name of the man is Satish Kumar. It's the same name as his biology teacher, but it's a common name. Together with Satish Kumar he prays.

A year later, when Pi is in Canada, he sees the Virgin Mary when he's walking alone in the forest.

Chapter 21

The author has spent an afternoon with Pi. He's sitting in a café. He thinks about Pi's religious dedication. "an intellect confounded yet a trusting sense of presence and of ultimate purpose."

Chapter 22

Pi can remember the last words of an atheist.

Chapter 23

His priest, imam and pandit notice that Pi is going to the church, mosque and the temple. They tell this to the parents of Pi. They all think that Pi has to choose one religion instead all of them. Pi disagrees with that. Bapu Gandhi said, 'All religions are true.' He just wants to love God.

Chapter 24

Pi's brother, Ravi, makes fun of that Pi has three religions.

Chapter 25

"And that wasn't the end of it. There are always those who take it upon themselves to defend God, as if Ultimate Reality, as if the sustaining frame of existence, where something weak and helpless. These people walk by a widow deformed by leprosy begging for a few paise, walk by children dressed in rags living in the street, and they think, "business as usual." (Page 71) Pi says there is a battle in us with the evil.

Chapter 26

Pi goes to see his father at his office. He wants permission to be baptized and a prayer rug. His father asks why he wants to pray, he answers him, 'because I love God'. Pi wants to be a Muslim and a Christian. His father disagrees with that and he has to ask mother. His friend is Indian and French, so Pi thinks he can be Muslim, Hindu and Christian.

Chapter 27

That night Pi's parents argue about the subject. They discuss who gave him the permission to buy a prayer rug. His mother doesn't like the Islam. At the end they laugh about it.

Chapter 28

Pi has bought a prayer rug, he loves it. It was a good prayer rug because it helped him remember that the earth is the creation of God. He prays most often in a corner in the yard. Pi also gets baptized. He says that his baptism was a slightly awkward affair.

Chapter 29

Pi and his family are moving. Pi doesn't understand why people move. The destination is announced to them one evening during dinner. It is Canada. Pi and Ravi are thunderstruck. Canada was like Timbuktu for them.

Chapter 30

The author is meeting Pi's wife, Meena. She's also Indian. We learn a bit of Pi and his home life.

Chapter 31/32

The both Kumars, the baker and the biology teacher, meet each other at the zoo. Pi meets with Mr. Kumar at the main gate. Pi actually thinks it is a bad idea, because there are many people there and he wouldn't recognize him.

When Pi is waiting there the next day there pass two friends of him by. Pi shows Mr. Kumar around. Mr. Kumar marvelled at everything in the zoo.

Chapter 33

The author tells again about his visit to Pi's house. He shows him family memorabilia. First he shows wedding photos. After that pictures of their honeymoon, his student days, and holidays. At last he shows him a picture of Richard Parker and his mother. It's hard for Pi to remember how his mother looked like.

Chapter 34

Father sold the zoo. The animals are sold to zoos in America, because they were willing to pay higher prices. The moving of a zoo is like the moving of a city. One day a deputation of three Americans came to the zoo to see the animals. Pi is very curious because he had never seen real live Americans. Pi says that their animals are future Yankees, and they, future Canucks.

Chapter 35

On the 21st of June in 1977 they leave Madras. They go on the Japanese cargo ship 'Tsimtsum'. His mother wants to buy cigarettes. This is weird because she doesn't smoke.

Chapter 36

The author is visiting Pi. He has a son and a girl. Nick and Usha.

Part 2

Chapter 37

Pi tells that the ship sank. When Pi is in the water he cried, "Jesus, Mary, Muhammad and Vishnu, how good to see you, Richard Parker! Don't give up, please. Come to the lifeboat. Do you hear this whistle? TREEEE! TREEEE! TREEEE! You heard right. Swim, swim! You're a strong swimmer. It's not a hundred feet." (page 93) It's a mystery how Pi comes in the lifeboat. He throws the lifebuoy to Richard Parker. Richard Parker comes in the lifeboat and Pi throws himself overboard.

Chapter 38

In this chapter Pi tells about why the ship sank. The ship endured a variety of weather during their journey. Every morning he marks their position on a map of the world he bought. They got new food in Manila. Four days after they left Manila Pi hears an explosion during the night. He tries to wake up his parents and Ravi but they don't believe him. Pi goes alone to the deck, it stormed very hard. No one is outside the ship. At the beginning Pi likes it, but after a while the weather wasn't entertaining anymore. Inside the ship were noises. The ship moves violently. On the bridge sees Pi finally some officers. They throw Pi overboard in a lifeboat.

Chapter 39

It was a miracle Pi didn't hurt him. He only lost his lifejacket. The men were shouting shouting, but Pi doesn't understand what they want. A zebra falls into the lifeboat, he breaks a bench.

Chapter 40

Richard Parker didn't jump in the water after Pi. While Pi is in the water he sees a shark fifteen feet away. He swims to the lifeboat, but doesn't see Richard Parker. Pi puts the oar through the hole of the lifebuoy. The ring was hugging him. Pi chooses one terror at a time, Pacific before Richard Parker.

Chapter 41

Pi watches the ship sinking. The ship disappeared with much burbling and belching. He looked about for survivors, but there was nothing. Pi is not in a comfortable position, so he inched his way along the oar till his feet were against the bow of the boat. Now he sees the zebra lying in the boat with a broken leg. Then he sees a hyena in the boat. Pi realized now why the sailors thrown him into the lifeboat. They weren't saving his life.

Chapter 42

A monkey is floating on an island of bananas, she comes to the boat. It's like the Virgin Mary to Pi. Pi doesn't succeed to take any of the bananas.

Chapter 43

Pi thinks about what people in Tokyo or Honolulu were doing when they heard the ship sank. The hyena appears again. It jumps over the zebra onto the stern. It constantly runs around the zebra and sometimes looks at Pi. Pi is very scared.

Chapter 44

Because of the zebra Pi dares hardly to move on the boat. He thinks his salvation is at the horizon. Suddenly there are a lot of flies around the boat. The nights scares Pi the most. A boat wouldn't see him in the night and the hyena could eat him.

Chapter 45

The next day Pi notices the hyena has bitten a leg of the zebra. The orang-utan is seasick. Pi finds it funny to see this human trait in animals. He doesn't understand why the hyena hasn't attacked the monkey.

Chapter 46

The hyena eats parts of the zebra, so the zebra is still alive. Zebra blood falls into the water. The monkey roars at the hyena and the hyena roars back. It's a very loud noise. Sharks have noticed the blood in the water and are swimming around the boat. Pi realized his family has died.

Chapter 47

By noon the zebra was dead. The hyena killed him. Then starts the hyena a fight with the monkey. Pi is shocked by the aggressiveness of Orange Juice, but a monkey can never win of a strong hyena. So the hyena killed also the monkey. Pi sees that the tiger is still in the boat.

Chapter 48

Pi tells about Richard Parker's name and why he is named so. It was because of a clerical error. A panther was terrorizing in Bangladesh. He killed seven people. The villagers hoped to kill the panther, so they hired a professional hunter. The hunter waited several nights, but the panther didn't appear. Instead of the panther a tiger appeared. He tries to calm down the tiger. The name of the hunter was Richard Parker.

Chapter 49

Pi was lying on the tarpaulin, he was pinned by weakness. Even thinking was exhausting.

Chapter 50-52

The boat is three and a half feet deep, eight feet wide and twenty-six feet long. That's printed on one side of the boat. He observes the boat very good. He reaches for a locker with emergency provisions. Pi is very thirsty and finally he finds the locker. In the locker is water and food. He makes a list of all the stuff on the boat.

Chapter 53/54

After Pi has eaten and drunk a lot he sleeps very well. When he wakes up he realizes the tiger will kill him, so he has to safe himself. While Pi is building a raft, Richard Parker kills the hyena. Pi is very afraid because he thinks now the tiger will kill him. In the end Pi is on his raft while it's raining. It rains all night. Pi drinks some rainwater, he isn't thirsty but he has to drink.

Chapter 55

In the morning the rain stopped. Pi thinks about what he will do with Richard Parker.

Chapter 56/57

Richard Parker has eaten enough, so he now looks like a nice, big fat domestic cat. There comes a sound out his body. Pi recognizes the sound. It's an expression of innocent and friendliness meanings. At that moment Pi thinks he has to tame him.

Chapter 58

Pi makes a program to train Richard Parker. He must make it clear what was his territory. But Pi realizes his situation is patently hopeless.

Chapter 59/60

Pi observes the moon and the stars in the night. "I felt like the sage Markandeya, who fell out of Vishnu's mouth while Vishnu was sleeping and so beheld the entire universe, everything that there is. Before the sage could die of fright, Vishnu awoke and took him back into his mouth." (Page 160)

Chapter 61

In the morning Pi is feeling strong. He decided to try his hand at fishing. In the locker is a fishing kit. Pi catches a fish and throws it toward Richard Parker. He feels guilty about killing the fish.

Chapter 62

The next day Richard Parker is thirsty. Pi feeds Richard Parker with the water of his solar-system.

Chapter 63

Pi tells about other people who survived at sea. Pi doesn't count all the days and weeks he's at sea. This helps him.

Chapter 64/65

His clothes disintegrates, victims of the sun and the salt. He also gets boils.

Chapter 66

Pi gets used to fishing. Because Pi kills so many fishes that his body begins to glitter from all the fish scales that become stick to it. Pi starts to catch turtles.

Chapter 67

The underside of the raft becomes a host to a multitude of sea life. More food for Pi. Pi compares the life in the sea with his life.

Chapter 68

Pi tells that his sleep pattern changed. He sleeps more than an hour. Richard Parker is a champion napper.

Chapter 69

On many nights Pi thought he saw a ship, but it never was a ship. Pi gives up to think that a ship will save him.

Chapter 70

Pi catches a turtle again. He drinks his blood. It was time to impose himself and curve out his territory.

Chapter 71

He makes a program for those who should even find themselves in a predicament such as he was.

Chapter 72

Pi continues his plan to tame Richard Parker. He learns to recognize the signals of Richard Parker. Pi has a shield of a turtle as defence.

Chapter 73

Pi wants to read a book. The only books he has are an surviving guide and a few empty pages. On the pages he writes a diary.

Chapter 74

It's hard for Pi to keep his religions.

Chapter 75

Pi thinks it's the birthday of his mother, so he sings "happy birthday".

Chapter 76

Pi wants to teach Richard Parker who's the boss. "I could tell that it made him nervous. He stayed low, his head cocked back and his ears flat to the sides, a quiet, sustained growl coming from him. I proceeded with exceptional alertness and deliberation, not only to preserve my life but also to give him the right signal." (Page 189)

Chapter 77

Pi is continuously hungry. He thinks about food often. One time he tried to eat the excreta of Richard Parker.

Chapter 78-80

Pi catches a shark. He throws it to Richard Parker. They fight. Richard Parker wins the battle.

Pi also catches a big fish. Richard Parker wants the fish too. But Pi is so hungry he wants the fish for himself. Pi can stay at the lifeboat, unless he stays out of the territory of the tiger.

Chapter 81

Richard Parker wouldn't survive without Pi. So he accepts Pi more.

Chapter 82

Pi collects all his water out of Richard Parker's sight. Pi says he eats like an animal.

Chapter 83

It storms. It's a heavy dangerous storm. Pi must get closer to Richard Parker. The tiger doesn't attack him. When it stops storming Pi sees there is a lot of damage. He notices the loss of the raft. The boat was in a sorry state.

Chapter 84

Pi sees a large object floating in the water. It's a whale. The eye is as big as Pi's head. Pi catches a bird and eats it.

Chapter 85/86

There was lightning, Pi likes it. Pi sees a ship. He shouts, but the captain doesn't see them. He almost sails over them.

Chapter 87

Pi tells about his dream rag. He makes it wet with sea water. He dreams because the time goes faster.

Chapter 88

They sail along oil and junk. There is also a table with food, but Pi can't eat it. There is also a bottle, Pi puts a message in it and throws it back in the sea.

Chapter 89

Pi and Richard Parker lost much weight. Pi stills write in his diary. Pi is afraid that he and the tiger will die soon. Pi finishes his diary with the last sentence: "I die". Then the diary is full.

Chapter 90

Richard Parker and Pi are weak. Pi thinks that Richard Parker is blind. After a few days Pi also goes blind. His eyes started to ooze pus. Pi is depressed. He comes to the conclusion he couldn't take care of Richard Parker any longer. Then Pi hears a voice and it isn't Richard Parker. It's another survivor on a raft. They talk about food. The other boy is also blind. It's a weird conversation. The boy comes in Richard Parker's territory, so the tiger kills the boy.

Chapter 91

After a few days Pi can see again. He sees the dead boy. It's horrible. Because Pi is very hungry he also eats some of the boy.

Chapter 93

Pi says the rest of his story is nothing but grief, ache and endurance. He turns to God.

Chapter 94

Pi and Richard Parker reaches land, it is Mexico. But Pi is so weak he barely has the strength to be happy about it. Richard Parker moves forward and disappears in the jungle. People find Pi and they wash him. The next day a police car brings him to a hospital.

Chapter 95

The author has interviewed two people from the Japanese Ministry of Transport, Mr. Okamoto and Mr. Chiba. They've heard of the story of the Tsimtsum. The next chapters are from a taped conversation.

Chapter 96

Mr. Okamoto and Mr. Chiba are visiting Pi in the hospital. They are from the Japanese Ministry of Transport. They want Pi to tell them about his story.

Chapter 98

They find Pi's story very interesting.

Chapter 99

They say that bananas don't float. Pi shows them they do. But there are many other things they don't believe about the story of Pi. They think Pi is lying. Mr. Okamoto and Mr. Chiba want a story without animals, so Pi tells them a story without the animals. He changes Orange Juice in his mother and the hyena for a cook. The zebra is a Taiwanese sailor, and the tiger is he. They want to know the reason why the boat sunk, but Pi doesn't know. In the end they prefer the story with animals.

Chapter 100

This chapter is a letter to the author with a summary of the story from Mr. Okamoto. Hey says that very few can claim to have survived so long at sea with an Bengal Tiger as Pi did.

After reading

a) did you like / dislike the book ? Why?

b) what was the most interesting scene / the most interesting character and why?

The most interesting character is of course Pi. The whole story is about him and you learn him know the best.

c) has the book come up to your expectations? why (not)?

The first time I heard the name of the book I thought it was about math, because of Pi. When I read the back page I saw it was just about a boy whose name was Pi.

d) would you recommend the book to someone else?  

possibly e) If you have seen a film version of this book, have you noticed any differences between book and film? what are they? I've seen the movie Life of Pi. Most things in the movie are the same as the book. But in the movie he says goodbye to a girl. I haven't read that in the book.

possibly f) If you know a  popsong about this sort of subject or theme: print the lyrics and say what the similarities between book and song are.

Green day- A boulevard of broken dreams

I walk a lonely road

The only one that I have ever known

Don't know where it goes

But it's home to me and I walk alone

I walk this empty street

On the boulevard of broken dreams

When the city sleeps

And I'm the only one and I walk alone

I walk alone

I walk alone

I walk alone

I walk a

My shadow's the only one that walks beside me

My shallow heart's the only thing that's beating

Sometimes I wish someone out there will find me

'Til then I walk alone

I'm walking down the line

That divides me somewhere in my mind

On the borderline of the edge

And where I walk alone

Read between the lines of what's

Fucked up and everything's alright

Check my vital signs to know I'm still alive

And I walk alone

I walk alone

I walk alone

I walk alone

I walk a

My shadow's the only one that walks beside me

My shallow heart's the only thing that's beating

Sometimes I wish someone out there will find me

'Til then I walk alone

I walk alone

I walk a

I walk this empty street

On the boulevard of broken dreams

Where the city sleeps

And I'm the only one and I walk a

My shadow's the only one that walks beside me

My shallow heart's the only thing that's beating

Sometimes I wish someone out there will find me

'Til then I walk alone

This song is also about loneliness. Pi is alone in the ocean, that's difficult sometimes. But until no one has found him he has to safe himself.