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Paul's Case: A Study in Temperament

Paul's Case: A Study in Temperament


by Willa Cather

Paul's Case: A Study in Temperament Dreams, Hopes, and Plans Quotes

How we cite our quotes: (Part.Paragraph)

Quote #1

There it was, what he wanted—tangibly before him, like the fairy world of a Christmas pantomime, but mocking spirits stood guard at the doors, and, as the rain beat in his face, Paul wondered whether he were destined always to shiver in the black night outside, looking up at it. (1.17)

This is our first hint that Paul's major life goal is to spend all his time at fancy hotels. If the alternative is wet boots, sure, we get it. But maybe there's a happy medium?

Quote #2

Suppose his father had heard him getting in at the window and come down and shot him for a burglar? Then, again, suppose his father had come down, pistol in hand, and he had cried out in time to save himself, and his father had been horrified to think how nearly he had killed him? Then, again, suppose a day should come when his father would remember that night, and wish there had been no warning cry to stay his hand? (1.21)

Okay, so Paul maybe cares about his relationship with his father after all—but this sure is a funny way of showing it.

Quote #3

When these stories lost their effect, and his audience grew listless, he became desperate and would bid all the boys good-bye, announcing that he was going to travel for awhile; going to Naples, to Venice, to Egypt. (1.33)

If nothing else, Paul's stories are probably entertaining—but his classmates can't possibly be buying them, right?

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