"Pigs in Heaven" by Barbara Kingsolver.

Essay by otorabianHigh School, 10th gradeA, November 2003

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Pigs in Heaven

"It has to do with our mythology in his country ... that if you are smart enough and work hard enough, you will make it. It allows us to perpetuate this huge gulf between the well off and the desperately poor. If you fall through the cracks you must be stupid or lazy or both. It's a trap because poverty is viewed as shameful. In this culture, it's more honorable to steal then to beg." This quote is from Barbara Kingsolver on what she thinks the theme is for her novel, Pigs in Heaven. Many critics approve of what she says and writes and others do not. Of these many critics, three critics gave more noticeable reviews for the novel. Rhoda Koenig, Karen Karbo, and Laura Shapiro, all gave Pigs in Heaven by Barbara Kingsolver, positive and negative reviews.

First, Rhoda Koenig offers a negative assessment of Pigs in Heaven, faulting the novel's political implications and reliance on tidy resolutions.

She says that television seems to provide not only the motor for Kingsolver's plot but the tone of her characterization and prose. Alice lets the television her relationship with Cash because of his addiction to it. The Oprah incident did not add much suspense to the plot and only caused disaster for the characters. Koenig also says that the prevailing coziness dissolves and chance of suspense. The characters in this book are all so nice and kind that there is chance for adventure or suspense. Interesting plot does not consist of kind and cozy characters. There are many problems and situations in this novel, but there is always a "happy ending" to everything. Koenig states "Pigs in Heaven introduces a number of serious problems, then resolves them with a dopey benignity and a handful of...