Age of Iron
by J.M. Coetzee
Age of Iron Hate Quotes
How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Chapter.Paragraph)
And on an impulse – no, more than that, with a conscious effort not to block the stirring of the impulse – I touched the boy's free hand.
It was not a clasp, not a long touch; it was the merest brush, the merest lingering of my fingertips on the back of his hand. But I felt him stiffen, felt an angry electric recoil. (2.323-324)
Bheki's friend seems to have an ingrained hatred toward Mrs. Curren. Even the slightest touch of her hand – a tender, kind gesture – is enough to make him shrink away.
A girl, an enormously fat teenager, shouldered me out of her way. "Damn you!" I gasped as I fell. "Damn you!" she gasped back, glaring with naked animosity. "Get out! Get out!" And she toiled up the duneside, her huge backside quaking. (3.91)
The hate that permeates Mrs. Curren's whole world is rarely so apparent as it is here. The girl and Mrs. Curren are complete strangers to one another. The girl knocks her over and reacts to her own action with increased anger towards Mrs. Curren. It seems that Mrs. Curren stands for something the girl hates. They don't see each other as individuals.
I remember, when the boy was hurt, how abundantly he bled, how rudely. How thin, by comparison, my bleeding onto the paper here. The issue of a shrunken heart. (3.419)
Mrs. Curren has spent a lot of time railing against the hate she witnesses in her community, but it seems like even she isn't immune to some feelings of hard-heartedness as well.