Study Guide

The Quiet American Part 3, Chapter 2: Section 1

By Graham Greene

Part 3, Chapter 2: Section 1

  • Back in Saigon from the north, Fowler returns to his place to find Pyle waiting for him. Dominguez has apparently let him in.
  • Fowler asks if Phuong has forgotten something and if Pyle is still playing with plastics.
  • Pyle remains silent on the latter, but answers "No" to the former. He's there because Fowler stopped by the American Legation and Pyle wasn't there.
  • Seeing a letter from the office on his table, Fowler reads it and learns that his request to stay in Vietnam has been accepted. Oh, the coincidence!
  • Pyle hasn't married Phuong yet. He wants to get special leave so he can marry her in the States and introduce her to his family. Presumably, Phuong would stay with them while he's away on business.
  • Fowler seems willing to remain friends with Pyle, but given the circumstances, he'd like no contact with Phuong.
  • Pyle is glad that Fowler isn't being harsh about it all.
  • As Pyle leaves, Fowler warns him against arming a Third Force and using it to fight the communists in the name of Democracy. He implores him to take Phuong home and forget the ideas of York Harding.
  • Pyle replies that he values Fowler's advice, but it doesn't sound like he'll be following it any time soon.