The Truth As Told By Mason Buttle
Written by Leslie Connor
As he grieves his best friend Benny’s death, Mason and his friend Calvin, who are targeted by the neighborhood bullies, create an underground haven for themselves, but when Calvin goes missing Mason finds himself in trouble.
Primary Source Pairing:
Mason and Calvin are working together to build a fort in the root cellar outside Mason’s crumbledown house. The root cellar just belongs to Mason and Calvin, and that is how they like it. Calvin teaches Mason about the Lascaux cave paintings in France where very early art was discovered depicting people and animals. The aurochs is one of the animals in the paintings in the cave, and Mason identifies with its size and strength. The powerful aurochs becomes a mascot of sorts for the root cellar, and after making charcoal in Calvin’s fireplace, Mason paints the aurochs on the root cellar wall and the mighty animal is embodied in the shared space. After Calvin’s accident, the root cellar is leveled but the body of the aurochs remained on part of an old stone wall. For this primary source pairing, investigate and study the art of the Lascaux cave paintings. Use the photograph included above as a starting point for analysis. Explore the same virtual tour of the caves as Calvin and Mason explored in the book on this website: http://archeologie.culture.fr/lascaux/en.
Questions for Discussion:
- Describe what you see.
- What do you notice first?
- What people and objects are shown?
- How are they arranged?
- What is the physical setting?
- What’s happening in the image?
- What tools were used to create this?
- Why were Calvin and Mason so interested in the Lascaux cave paintings?
- How did the Lascaux cave paintings inspire Mason?