Absalom, Absalom! Memory and the Past Quotes
How we cite our quotes:
Miss Rosa never saw him; this was a picture, an image. (3.12)
Miss Rosa imagines everything about Charles Bon and even develops a childish crush on him, but she never actually lays eyes on him. He is, in many ways, a figment of her imagination.
We have a few old mouth-to-mouth tales; we exhume from old trunks and boxes and drawers letters without salutation or signature, in which men and women who once lived and breathed are now merely initials or nicknames. (4.7)
For the characters in the novel, history is not clear or linear, nor is it narrated by someone with a clear sense of the big picture (although that would be awful helpful!). History comes from fragments of stories, multiple versions, and very subjective opinions.
That is the substance of remembering – sense, sight, smell: the muscles with which we see and hear and feel – not mind, not thought: there is no such thing as memory: the brain recalls just what the muscles grope for. (5.8)
Once again, thoughts of the past come through the senses. Memory is not just an intellectual entity; it's experienced through the body and sensory encounters. We all know that feeling, right?