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The Island of Dr. Moreau

The Island of Dr. Moreau

by H. G. Wells

Identity Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #1

I have never seen men so wrapped up before, and women so only in the East. They wore turbans, too, and thereunder peered out their elfin faces at me, faces with protruding lower jaws and bright eyes. (6.5)

As superficial as it may be, we identify people by the clothes they wear. Let's just admit it; we all do it. Prendick first notices the difference in the Beast Folk's clothes before working his way to the physical differences.

Quote #2

This man was of a moderate size, and with a black negroid face. (6.6)

Prendick attempts to identify the Beast Folk by connecting them with something distinctly non-European. By today's standards it comes across on the wrong side of racist. For Victorian readers however, it would have given the Beast Folk and the island an air of mystery, since Africa and African cultures were far from understood—though still easily exploitable.

Quote #3

Each of these creatures, despite its human form, had woven into it, into its movements, into the expression of its countenance, into its whole presence, some now irresistible suggestion of a hog, a swinish taint, the unmistakable mark of the beast. (9.10)

Prendick finally notices the animal aspects of the Beast Folk's identity. It's like when you finally see the hidden picture within another picture. Once you see it, you can't un-see it.

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