As you read, imagine you are the protagonist.
- What challenges are you facing?
- What fears or concerns might you have?
- What may prevent you from acting in the way you ought?
- What role did Cotton Mather play in the advancement of modern medicine?
- How did this discovery benefit mankind?
- What responsibility does Cotton Mather feel toward his fellow citizens in Boston? How does this shape his purpose?
Discuss the following questions with your students.
- What is the historical context of the narrative?
- What historical circumstances presented a challenge to the protagonist?
- How and why did the individual exhibit a moral and/or civic virtue in facing and overcoming the challenge?
- How did the exercise of the virtue benefit civil society?
- How might exercise of the virtue benefit the protagonist?
- What might the exercise of the virtue cost the protagonist?
- Would you react the same under similar circumstances? Why or why not?
- How can you act similarly in your own life? What obstacles must you overcome in order to do so?
- Students will analyze Cotton Mather’s performance during the smallpox outbreak in Boston in the eighteenth century
- Students will understand how they can pursue their purpose in their own lives
- Students will apply this knowledge to pursue the purpose in their own lives.