In what follows we will discuss a few important aspects as concerns the short story “The Hockey Sweater” by Roch Carrier:

Social context: Sports

How healthy do you think it is to be as passionate about sports as the protagonist of the short story is? In your opinion, is there a danger that a passion can transform into obsession? Notice that the boys in the short story seem to have forgotten their individuality; they copy everything about Maurice Richard, even the way he combs his hair: “… we all combed our hair in the same style as Maurice Richard, and to keep it in place we used a sort of glue – a great deal of glue.” (p. 276, ll. 17-19)

Then, how important do you think it is for children to feel included and accepted into a certain group? The protagonist of the short story, for instance, is isolated from the team when he appears at the game wearing the sweater of the Toronto Maple Leafs. This hurts him deeply, as he cannot understand why a simple sweater has such a deep effect on his life and on his passion. Is fashion the only element that affects a child/teen’s inclusion in a group?

Reflect also on the consequences of extreme admiration in sports. Is there a risk of being a passion...

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