Fun Activities for Teaching Touching the Void
Simon reaches the summit with Joe P Simon slips off the edge of the ridge P After helping Joe on the descent, Simon cuts the rope when Joe falls off an ice cliff and allows Joe to fall into a crevasse, presuming him to be now dead P Simon descends the mountain alone P , meets Richard at base camp and tells him the truth P Simon finds Joe outside the tents at base camp and arranges for him to get to a hospital P Simons character is shaped by events in the novel, more so than Joes.
He changes dramatically over the course of the book. Note the contrasts: i at the beginning he is optimistic and brave ii he ignores Joes caution about the weather iii on the mountain it is up to Joe to persuade Simon that there is a route, even though Simon more often than not takes the lead iv at the end of the book Simon is shown as angry and confused, but then efficient in his help for Joe. Richard meets Joe and Simon in Lima and stays at their base camp for the entire expedition.
He gets as far as base camp and suffers from altitude sickness and decides he will venture no further P3. He stays at base camp while Joe and Simon do test climbs P6. Richard walks with Joe and Simon until the going gets too tough P Richard looks after Simon on his return P Richard presses Simon to leave for Lima P Richard holds Joes leg as Simon inspects the damage P Richard is a minor character, but he plays an important part in helping us understand the events.
He represents the outside audience that Simon will have to face when he returns from the expedition. It is easier for us to empathise with the Richards reactions when one of the climbers does not return than it is to consider the reactions of people we have not met in the book. He acts as a plot device in helping us gauge our understanding and reactions to events as well as when Richard suggests he and Simon leave base camp in chapter These are a group of people who Simon, Joe and Richard call on for supplies and help.
They give Richard a place to stay when he gets lost on his way to base camp P4. They sell homemade cheese and provide other food supplies to the climbers P The girls smile sadly at Simon, showing sympathy for his loss of Joe P The girls expect to take some of Joes possessions as they are no longer needed P Spinoza haggles over the price of the mules that will get Joe off the mountain P The main role of the villagers in the book is their reaction to the problems the men face on the mountain.
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When Richard is lost he has to negotiate for food and shelter. When Joe needs to get down the mountain, near death, Simon has to strike a deal with Spinoza. As with the environment, there is little sense of compassion with the locals-their job is survival and the outsiders bring items they need. I envied Simon his carefree take-it-as-it-comes attitude. P6 He was an easy friend: dependable, sincere, ready to life as a jokethat touch of madness that makes few people special.
P6 He had an odd air of detachment. P69 He had suddenly become stern and efficient. I resolved to try some that very night. P4 The sudden fright still had me breathing hard and it annoyed me to see Simon climb easily over the difficulties and know that I had lost control and let fear get the better of me. P38 I looked back and was amazed to see that Joe had started traversing away from the cliff. He was trying to help himself by contouring round the small rise in front of him. P72 like the paintings by Titian of grossly fat nudes that had mesmerised me at fourteen.
P Other Key Quotes:. I relished this moment when I could be entirely alone. P2 Isolation 4, foot West Face had so far defeated all attempts. Simon was everything I was not, everything I would like to have been. P6 Relationships..
P22 Foreshadowing For the first time we could see the summitit looked like bad weather was on the way. P36 Foreshadowing Frustration and the mounting exhaustion maddened me to a fury which I knew would be vented on Simon if he came close enough. P63we werevery much alone P68 Isolation Simon would not be able to get me up it.
He would leave me.
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He had no choice. Left here? I felt cold at the thought. Youre deadno two ways about it!
Had I killed him? I felt numb. The rope joltedSo!
It ends here. I dont want to disappear without a trace. Theyd never know we did it. I couldnt take my eyes from it. P Dramatic Irony Richard to Simon-hes not coming back. You know itI think we should go.
I lay still and listened to the argument. P Survival You saved my life you know. It must have been terrible for you that night. I dont blame you. You had no choice You did all that you could have done. Thanks for getting me down. Others say that it was simply a matter of survival. Foundation Paper Questions: 10 minutes planning and 35 minutes writing. How does Joe Simpson shoe the conditions of the mountain range in Touching the Void; think about:.
The conditions the men experienced. Not for me the discussions about the utility of the "pseudo-documentary format," or questions about how the camera happened to be waiting at the bottom of the crevice when Simpson fell in. The movie is about Joe Simpson and Simon Yates , two Brits in their mids who were determined to scale the forbidding west face of a mountain named Siula Grande, in the Peruvian Andes.
They were fit and in good training, and bold enough to try the "one push" method of climbing, in which they carried all their gear with them instead of establishing caches along the route. They limited their supplies to reduce weight, and planned to go up and down quickly. It didn't work out that way. Snowstorms slowed and blinded them. The ascent was doable, but on the way down, the storms disoriented them and the drifts concealed the hazard of hidden crevices and falls. Roped together, they worked with one man always anchored, and so Yates was able to hold the rope when Simpson had a sudden fall.
But it was disastrous: He broke his leg, driving the calf bone up through the knee socket.
Touching the Void & becoming more resilient
Both of them knew that a broken leg on a two-man climb, with rescue impossible, was a death sentence, and indeed Simpson tells us he was rather surprised that Yates decided to stay with him and try to get him down. We know that Simpson survived, because the movie shows the real-life Simpson and Yates, filmed against plain backgrounds, looking straight on into the camera, remembering their adventure in their own words.
We also see the ordeal re-enacted by two actors Brendan Mackey as Simpson, Nicholas Aaron as Yates , and experienced climbers are used as stunt doubles. The movie was shot on location in Peru and also in the Alps, and the climbing sequences are always completely convincing; the use of actors in those scenes is not a distraction because their faces are so bearded, frost-bitten and snow-caked that we can hardly recognize them.
Yates and Simpson had a foot rope. Yates' plan was to lower Simpson feet and wait for a tug on the rope.
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