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The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time


by Mark Haddon

Isolation Quotes in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #7

[...] I didn't speak to anyone and for the whole afternoon I sat in the corner of the Library groaning with my head pressed into the join between the two walls and this made me feel calm and safe. (89.14)

This is during one of Christopher's Black Days. We're just going to ask this again – what is it that makes him feel so unsafe? We're not sure there's any easy answer, but it's worth thinking about. Again.

Quote #8

Which means that a murder victim is usually killed by someone known to them and fairies are made out of paper and you can't talk to someone who is dead. (139.10)

In that last clause, about how you can't talk to someone who's dead, Christopher is certainly writing about his mother, and feeling really separate from her. But in dismissing the existence of fairies, he's denying us the possibility of connecting to the mystical, magical sides of the world, and of ourselves. The only connection between beings he does allow is a dangerous one, and one that causes great harm: the relationship between murderer and victim. Eek.

Quote #9

I sat on the bed for a long time looking at the floor. Then I heard Toby scratching in his cage. I looked up and saw him staring through the bars at me. (167.29)

Here's another powerful image, as the rat's physical isolation in the cage parallels Christopher's emotional isolation. We might even compare Toby's scratching to Christopher's uneasy processing of his realization about his mother being alive. Deep.

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