Study Guide: Listening Is an Act of Love

B. Reading the Stories

5. SULOCHANA KONUR interviewed by her daughter-in-law MELISSA KONUR

Pre-reading statement of opinion:  In some cultures people have arranged marriages (where two families agree to a contract for their children before their children get to know each other); in others, people get married after they have dated an individual that they have met and chosen on their own.  Which kind of marriage do you prefer?  Why?

Post-reading guided summary:  Write about the differences between Sulochana Konur’s and Melissa Konur’s lifestyles.  Explain what ingredients the mother-in-law believes will ensure the success of her son and daughter-in-law’s marriage. Discuss the wisdom of the mother-in-law’s statement, “If anything, [marriage] will be more difficult for you, because you have gone across cultures.  There is no commonality other than the humanity” (26-27).

Personal response:  Write your reaction to one or two aspects of the summary you have written, and try to connect this response to the opinion that you expressed before reading the StoryCorps transcript.