Deep Water - Important Questions

1.      Why was Douglas determined to get over his fear of water?
2.      How did the instructor “build a swimmer” out of Douglas?
How did the instructor turn Douglas into a swimmer?
3.      How did Douglas make sure that he conquered the old terror?
What efforts did Douglas make to get over his fear of water?
4.      How does Douglas make clear to the reader the sense of panic that gripped him as he almost drowned? Describe the details that have made the description vivid.
5.      How did Douglas overcome his fear of water?
Douglas fully realised the truth of Roosevelt’s statement, “All we have to fear is fear itself.” How did this realisation help him brush aside his fear and become an expert swimmer?
6.      Why does Douglas as an adult recount a childhood experience of terror and his conquering of it? What larger meaning does he draw from this experience?
7.      What is the “misadventure” that William Douglas speaks about?
8.      What were the series of emotions and fears that Douglas experienced when he was thrown into the pool? What plans did he make to come to the surface?
What did Douglas feel and do when he was pushed into the swimming pool?
9.      How did this experience affect him?
“This handicap stayed with me as the years rolled by.” How did it affect his pursuits for pleasure?
10.    Which two incidents in Douglas’ early life made him scared of water?
“I crossed to oblivion, and the curtain of life fell.” What was the incident which nearly killed Douglas and developed in him a strong aversion to water?
11.    Why did Douglas prefer to go to YMCA swimming pool to learn swimming?
Which factors made Douglas to decide in favour of YMCA pool?
12.    Desire, determination and diligence lead to success. Explain the value of these qualities in the light of Douglas’ experience in ‘Deep Water.’
13.    Why did Douglas go to Lake Wentworth in New Hampshire? How did he make his terror flee?
14.    Comment on the appropriateness of the title ‘Deep Water’?
Do you think the title 'Deep Water’ is apt? Give reasons in support of your answer.
15.    What impression do you form of William O. Douglas on the basis of reading ‘Deep Water’?

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