Study questions

On this page, we suggest a number of study questions that can help you get started with your analysis of “Hope” by Jonathan Santlofer. On the following pages, you can read examples and explanations that can help you answer all of these questions.

  • What is the effect of beginning the story in media res?
  • How is the conclusion to Hope and Artie's journey foreshadowed in the early sections of the story?
  • How does Hope view the abortion? How does Artie view it?
  • How does the abortion affect Hope and Artie's relationship? What causes the conflict between them?
  • Why is it significant that the setting of the story is the US in the 1960s?
  • What kind of narrator tells the story? Does the point of view change at any point?
  • What are the main themes of the story?
  • Is the title of the short story ironic? 
  • Is the story's message hopeful, or does it present a darker perspective?
  • Is abortion still a taboo in the US today?
  • What other taboos exist in modern society?