Study Guide

Looking for Alaska Allusions

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Literary and Philosophical References

Last Words

  • Francois Rabelais, "I go to seek a Great Perhaps" (136before.18, 20after.23, 118after.2, 136after.12-13)
  • Simon Bolivar "How will I ever get out of this labyrinth!" (128before.121, 2before.79, thelastday.43, 6after.21-24, 136after.9)
  • Henrik Ibsen, "On the contrary" (128before.56)
  • John F. Kennedy, "That's obvious" (128before.115)
  • Millard Fillmore, "The nourishment is palatable" (109before.23)
  • Albert Sidney Johnston, "Yes, and I fear seriously" (67before.2)
  • Robert E. Lee, "Strike the tent" (67before.2)
  • Ulysses S. Grant, "Water" (67before.3)
  • William McKinley, "We are all going" (2before.76, 79; 51after.3)
  • Che Guevara, "Shoot, coward. You are only going to kill a man" (thelastday.43)
  • Sedgwick, "They couldn't hit an elephant from this dis—" (thelastday.45)
  • Henry Ward Beacher, "Now comes the mystery" (thedayafter.44)
  • Dylan Thomas, "I've had eighteen straight whiskeys. I do believe that's a record" (thedayafter.44)
  • Eugene O'Neill, "Born in a hotel room, and… died in a hotel room" (thedayafter.44)
  • Princess Diana, "Oh God. What's happened?" (thedayafter.44)
  • James Dean, "They've got to see us" (thedayafter.44)
  • Meriwether Lewis, "I am not a coward, but I am so strong. So hard to die" (6after.8)
  • Thomas Edison, "It's very beautiful over there" (136after.18)

Historical References

  • Emperor Augustus (76before.9)
  • Karl Marx (21after.5)
  • Mona Lisa (69after.7)

Pop Culture References

  • Radiohead (87before.11)
  • The Flaming Lips (87before.11)
  • The Simpsons, (christmas.4)
  • Nightmare on Elm Street (2before.8)
  • The Brady Bunch (thelastday.13, 24, 33)
  • National Geographic (thedayafter.30)
  • Prince (102after.36)

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