Fifth Business Study Guide



All throughout his life, Dunstan harbors a lot of guilt for a variety of things. It’s his guilt that drove him to look after Mary Dempster later in his life. Even other characters in the story feel guilt for things that also centered around the life of Mary Dempster, albeit, more suppressed.


Dunstan obsession with saints is also very evident throughout the story. His belief that Mary Dempster is actually a saint greatly influenced his adulthood.


Deptford is a very traditional town that immediately condemns people who go against the grain. It is their narrow-mindedness that drew a lot of characters away from the town.

Essay Prompts

1.) Why do you think Dunstan became upset with the article that was published in the school publication?

2.) Dunstan resented his mother because of her actions. How do you think her treatment of him influenced his adult life?

3.) Why do you think Boy and Dunstan were to keen on erasing their past in Deptford?

4.) How important was Liesl’s involvement in Dunstan’s life?

5.) What do you think is the meaning of the book’s title and how important is it to the whole plot?

Multiple Choice Study Questions

1.) Why was Percy mad at Dunstan?
a. because he dated Leola first
b. his sled was faster
c. he was wealthier than Percy
d. he punched him

2.) When did the Dempsters take their daily walks?
a. mornings
b. daybreak
c. early evenings
d. after dinner

3.) What year did Dunstan begin his story?
a. 1908
b. 1898
c. 1919
d. 1918

4.) What is Dunstan’s nickname from childhood?
a. Runny
b. Danny
c. Percy
d. Dunny

Cite this page:

Celis, Christine. "TheBestNotes on Fifth Business". . 09 May 2017