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'The Legend of Sleepy Hollow' Questions for Study and Discussion

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"The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" is the story of Ichabod Crane, a schoolteacher who experiences strange events. Take a look at these questions for study and discussion.
  • What is important about the title?

  • What are the conflicts in "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow"? What types of conflict (physical, moral, intellectual, or emotional) do you see?

  • How does Irving reveal character in "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow"?

  • What are some themes in the story? How do they relate to the plot and characters?

  • Is Ichabod Crane consistent in his actions? Is he a fully developed character? How? Why?

  • Do you find the characters likable? Are the characters persons you would want to meet?

  • Discuss some of the symbols in "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow."

  • Compare "The Devil and Tom Walker" with "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow."

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

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

  • What supernatural or surprising events are employed by Washington Irving? Are these happenings believable?

  • What is the role of women in "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow"? Do women play a role?
  • Does the story end the way you expected? How? Why?

  • Would you recommend the story to a friend? Would you read other works by Washington Irving--based on your reading of this story?

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