Never Let Me Go
by Kazuo Ishiguro
Identity Quotes in Never Let Me Go
How we cite our quotes: (Chapter.Paragraph)
"It's not worth getting upset about," Tommy went on. […] "Our models, what they were like, that's nothing to do with us, Kath. It's just not worth getting upset about." (15.4)
It shouldn't surprise us that Tommy has a unique perspective. While most of the characters really want to know who their "possible" might be, Tommy is different. He sees himself as entirely separate from his clone model. Clearly Tommy values his independence.
"It's just that sometimes, every now and again, I get these really strong feelings when I want to have sex. […] That's why I started thinking, well, it has to come from somewhere. It must be to do with the way I am." I stopped, but when Tommy didn't say anything, I went on: "So I thought if I find her picture, in one of those magazines, it'll at least explain it. I wouldn't want to go and find her or anything. It would just, you know, kind of explain why I am the way I am." (15.110)
Kathy has questions about her body and she wants answers. So where else would she go looking besides the original body that she was cloned from? But really—what can that body tell her? It seems like Kathy might not realize that your environment has a lot to do with who you are and how you behave. Just look at what an effect Hailsham had on her.
I don't know if she recognised us at that point; but without doubt, she saw and decided in a second what we were, because you could see her stiffen—as if a pair of large spiders was set to crawl towards her. (21.12)
When Madame sees Kathy and Tommy outside her house, she has the same reaction she did so many years before. It's almost as if Madame isn't sure if Kathy and Tommy are human at all. How would this sentence be different if Kathy had replaced the phrase "what we were" with "who we were"?