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'The Lady of Shalott' Questions for Study & Discussion

Lord Tennyson's Ever-Popular Poem


"The Lady of Shalott" is one of the greatest works by Lord Tennyson. Here are a few questions for study and discussion.
  • What is important about the title?

  • What are the conflicts in "The Lady of Shalott"? What types of conflict (physical, moral, intellectual, or emotional) do you see in this poem?

  • How does Lord Tennyson reveal character in "The Lady of Shalott"?

  • What are some themes in the poem? How do they relate to the development of the poem and characters?

  • What are some symbols in "The Lady of Shalott"?

  • Is the Lady consistent in her actions? Is she a fully developed character? How? Why?

  • Does the poem end the way you expected? How? Why?

  • What is the central/primary purpose of the poem? Is the purpose important or meaningful?

  • How does the poem compare to other works from the Victorian period?

  • How essential is the setting to the poem? Could the poem have taken place anywhere else?

  • What is the role of women in the poem?

  • Would you recommend this poem to a friend?

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