The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time


With the help of Siobhan, what method did Christopher use to find out what facial expressions mean?

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The series of facial expressions Siobhan shows him are simple illustrations, though Christopher has come to read some of them as representative of certain emotions. However, there is rupture – between Christopher as reader and sign to be read – when he admits that he is unable to read the pictures of faces that were not clearly happy or sad. Though we see a disability here from Christopher, we must also note his ability to recognize his own delicacies in his relationship to image/textuality. Even here in a moment of "disability," he is not without a reading/comprehension strategy: "if I don't know what someone is saying, I ask them what they mean or I walk away" (Haddon 3). Other illustrations include the depiction of the galaxy (10), a chart (11) that shows "how you work out what prime numbers are," the pictures of the Orion constellation (125), and a graph, which he is quick to point out, "is just an illustration" This method is called social decoding.


The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time