Stranger in a Strange Land
How we cite our quotes:
I am only an egg. (5.118)
Here's Mike's self-recognized identity. While the world knows him as the Man from Mars, he understands himself as only a young Martian in need of guidance and maturity.
"A poisonous snake is not dangerous, no more than a loaded gun is dangerous—in each case, you must handle it properly." (13.41).
Jubal did not label his pet snake as dangerous, so for him, it wasn't. According to Jubal, labeling can sometimes inform identity rather than come out of it. P.S. Poisonous snakes are dangerous.
"Man is the animal who laughs." (14.159)
Amen. And notice how this steers clear of issues of biology and social ordering. When Mike laughs later in the novel, it proves another important coming-of-age for him, the age when he becomes a full-on human. Welcome to humanity, Mike—buckle your seatbelt, it's going to be a bumpy ride.