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“Well, then, if I’m a Namer, what does that mean? What does a Namer do?”
The wings drew together, the eyes closed, singly, and in groups, until all were shut. Small puffs of mist-like smoke rose, swirled about him. “When I was memorizing the names of the stars, part of the purpose was to help them each to be more particularly the particular star each one was supposed to be. That’s basically a Namer’s job. Maybe you’re supposed to make earthlings feel more human.”
This quote highlights the importance of naming to this novel—the word “Name” itself is capitalized throughout the book. The act of Naming supposedly affirms the identity of the thing given the name, and confirms its place in the world. Naming is an important part of Proginoskes’ job and identity, and it becomes an important part of Meg as well throughout the book.
Love isn't how you feel. It's what you do. I've never had a feeling in my life. As a matter of fact, I matter only with earth people.
This quote illustrates two of the main motifs in the novel: love and free-will. It shows how it is not what people believe or feel, but the choices that lead to their actions that actually determine who they are.
I think your mythology would call them fallen angels. War and hate are their business, and one of their chief weapons is un-Naming - making people not know who they are. If someone knows who he is, really knows, then he doesn't need to hate. That's why we still need Namers, because there are places throughout the universe like your planet Earth. When everyone is really and truly Named, then the Echthroi will be vanquished.
By describing the roles of the Echthroi and Namers, this quote illustrates the main external conflict of the book. It is essentially a good vs. evil conflict, as the Echthroi are compared to fallen angels and the singular cherubim are similar to cherubs. In this case, the evil that the Echtrhoi are trying to bring upon the universe is a sense of nothingness and emptiness, where no one or nothing really exists. The Namers combat them by Naming everyone, to solidify their identities and places in the world.
The images were gone, but Calvin was there, was with her, was part of her. She had moved beyond knowing him in sensory images to that place which is beyond images. Now she was kything Calvin, not red hair, or freckles, or eager blue eyes, or the glowing smile; nor was she hearing the deep voice with the occasional treble cracking; not any of this, but - Calvin. She was with Calvin, kything with every atom of her being, returning to him all the fortitude and endurance and hope which he had given her.
This quote not only highlights the growing relationship between Meg and Calvin, two of the main characters, but also illustrates the idea of kything. This fantastical telepathic-form of communication is an integral part of the plot and character development, and is used to show the importance of human connections. It shows that friendship and love can exist without words; it can be shown through “communion”, not “communication.”
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