Discussion questions for The Danish Girl


1) What is the true nature of the marriage depicted in The Danish Girl? What does this story say about love and intimacy?

2) Both Lili and Greta must change, for the sake of their marriage and for themselves. Discuss each woman’s evolution.

3) What role does Greta play in Lili’s transition? What motivated her to help Lili?

4) What role does the city of Copenhagen play in influencing the lives of its characters?

5) Greta loves the people in her life in different ways. How does her expressions of love change over the course of the novel.

6) When Henrik says to Lili “I already know. Don’t worry about anything but I already know” (page 60), what does he mean? Why does Lili tell Henrik she can’t see him anymore?

7) What does art and painting symbolize for Greta and Lili?

8) Why doesn’t Lili tell Greta about seeing Henrik again?

9) Why does Lili put so much faith in her final operation? What does it mean to her?

10) Discuss how Lili views her former life? What has she said good-bye to? What will she always carry with her?

11) Lili is a pioneer in the movement for civil rights for trans men and women. Discuss how much and how little has changed since her time. Do you believe she is a hero?