Monuments Men (Edsel) - Discussion Questions

Discussion Questions
Use our LitLovers Book Club Resources; they can help with discussions for any book:

How to Discuss a Book (helpful discussion tips)
Generic Discussion Questions—Fiction and Nonfiction
Read-Think-Talk (a guided reading chart)

Also, consider using these LitLovers talking points to help start a discussion for The Monuments Men:

1. "It was a good group, he had to admit. A group [Stout] himself might have chosen, if given the chance." Talk about the original group of 11 men put together to salvage the world's artwork. What made George Stoat believe that it was the right team for the job? What were the men's individual qualifications, both personal and professional?

2. What kind of man was George Stout? How would you describe James Rorimer? Why was his service so invaluable to the mission? Who else stood out among the Monuments Men?

3. What role did Rose Valland play? How critical was she to the success of the Monuments Men mission?

4. Why were the pieces of art so important to Hitler? Why was he so intent on creating his "Führermuseum...the largest, most imposing, most spectacular art museum in the world"?

5. Should the team who rescued the stolen art be elevated to the level of heroism as Robert M. Edsel indicates? Or should we consider them as good men doing a hard job very effectively—and extend our gratitude and respect?

6. Another question that must be asked is the degree of importance accorded to the mission. Is protecting art worth the price of a human life—or diverting resources otherwise used to protect lives? What do you think? What does Edsel suggest?

7. If you have seen the George Clooney directed movie, how does it compare to the book? What do you think of the film...it's music (especially), visuals, and actors. If you haven't yet seen the film, do you intend to after reading and discussing the book?

8. What have you learned from reading The Monuments Men—about the war, the Nazis, and most of all about art?

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