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Quotes

Quote #1

"But you broke your vow, throwing it away with your life. And now you cannot say my name." This was true. Hode moved his white lips, but could not say his brother's name. (2.10-11)

This is our first hint as to why suicide is so offensive on Gethen society. It's betrayal of those who love you. Keep the words "betrayal" and "love" in mind, here. They're going to be popping up a lot together as you read.

Quote #2

I was angry; for Ashe's love had always forced me to act against my heart. (6.9)

Notice how Estraven doesn't say "my love for Ashe." What's that tell you about the guy?

Quote #3

The furthest extreme from this practice is the custom of vowing kemmering (Karh. oskyommer), which is to all intents and purposes monogamous marriage. It has no legal status, but socially and ethically is an ancient and vigorous institution. (7.6)

Love and marriage, love and marriage, they go together like a horse and carriage—even on a planet without horses…or carriages.

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