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The Hour of the Star

The Hour of the Star

by Clarice Lispector

Philosophical Viewpoints: Existentialism Quotes Page 1

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #1

The truth is always some inner power without explanation. The more genuine part of my life is unrecognizable, extremely intimate and impossible to define. (1.3)

If truth is elusive and unrecognizable, it seems weird that the narrator would be trying to write about it at all. Is his task doomed before it even begins?

Quote #2

As I prayed I emptied my soul—and this emptiness is everything that I can ever hope to possess. Apart from this, there is nothing. But emptiness, too, has its value and somehow resembles abundance. One way of obtaining is not to search, one way of possessing is not to ask; simply believe that my inner silence is the solution to my—to my mystery. (1.14)

Here, it seems like the narrator is striving for something that Macabéa has always already possessed. Macabéa has nothing and wants for nothing, so she overflows with light and purity. (We still think she'd be better off with a sandwich.)

Quote #3

But the idea of transcending my own limits suddenly appealed to me. This happened when I decided to write about reality, since reality exceeds me. Whatever one understands by reality. (1.24)

So, "What is reality?" is pretty much question numero uno that philosophy tries to answer. But Rodrigo seems to think that there's more than one kind of reality, and that Macabéa's reality is different than his—and maybe inaccessible. This could be one more way that The Hour of the Star tries to convince us that everyone is alone: we all inhabit different realities.

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