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The Time Traveler's Wife

The Time Traveler's Wife


by Audrey Niffenegger

Mortality Quotes in The Time Traveler's Wife

How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Book.Chapter.Paragraph)

Quote #1

[Henry:] "It's not good to know things ahead. It screws up your life."[Clare:] "Yes. But you can't half tell me." [Henry:] "There's nothing to tell". [Clare:] I'm really beginning to panic. "She killed herself." I am flooded with certainty. It is the thing I've always feared most. [Henry:] "No. No. Absolutely not." (1.5.29-32)

Clare's reaction shows that not knowing the specifics of an event in the future make us think of the worst possible scenario, such as death, because we fear the unknown. And we can fear far worse than actually happens.

Quote #2

[Henry to Clare:] "My mother dying… it's the pivotal thing… everything else goes around and around it… I dream about it, and I also – time travel to it. Over and over […] I should have died, too." (1.6.36)

His mother's death still impacts Henry's life because he feels guilty for not being able to protect her, even though he really now know that he couldn't have done anything.

Quote #3

[Henry:] But then I feel guilty for wanting to avoid the sadness; dead people need us to remember them, even if it eats us, even if all we can do is say I'm sorry until it is as meaningless as air. (1.6.4)

Although Henry is not religious he believes that dead people need to be remembered. Why is that? Do you really think it's the dead people that "need us" to remember them, or is it that we need remember the dead?

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