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Clay Jensen's Struggle In 13 Reasons Why

Decent Essays
Communication is a powerful thing that may cause people to either drift apart or come closer. People communicate to be understood, but the lack of communication can lead a person to separate themselves from everyone else, only wishing to be understood. In Jay Asher’s book, 13 Reasons Why, Clay Jensen receives a box of tapes that claim they’re by Hannah Baker, a girl Clay claimed he ‘used to like’. The only problem is that Hannah Baker had committed suicide some time ago, and she mentions how whoever is receiving her tapes is a reason for her death. Now Clay has to locate the other tapes to find out the secrets behind Hannah’s death, and how he played a role in it. Through the process of listening to each tape Clay realizes something. If Clay…show more content…
If Clay should’ve brave enough to ask her the truth about all of the rumors surrounding her. Rumors he is so afraid of, so then he might’ve been able to truly understand her and have a chance to save her. As Clay listens to the first set of tapes of Hannah’s story he thinks, “Looking for answers to questions I didn’t know how to ask. About her life. About everything.” (Asher 72). Clay doesn’t know anything about Hannah and ended up with many questions about her, some which will be answered in her tapes, but others which will never be. This is the part in the story where Clay realizes that if he had spoken to Hannah more honestly, he would’ve known what is going on in her life. The words that sticks out are ‘answers to questions I didn’t know how to ask’. The author used these words to show how Clay had never truly communicated with Hannah while she was alive because of his fear, enough to end up having questions about her even after she’s long…show more content…
Hannah is desperately giving people ‘signs’ that she is “breaking, slowly dying”. Clay noticed this and turns the other way, and giving up on any thought of communication between them at that moment. Ultimately, giving up on her as well unknowingly. This becomes clear when Clay thinks, “A flash. But she knew I was watching her. And even though no one else saw it, I turned away. She was on her own.” (Asher 192). Clay finally realized how he gave up on not only Hannah, but the communication between them. Clay chose silence rather than a decision that could’ve saved her life. This illustrates how Clay notices Hannah’s desperate pleas and signs to people of what she is going through, but Clay turns his back completely with his choice of silence. Consequently, his choice had resulted in Hannah choosing suicide because of how she truly felt alone. It also reveals that Hannah is left alone by the person who claimed to ‘like’ her. The words that have an impact are ‘I turned away. She was on her own’. The author used these words to show how Clay’s choice of silence left Hannah alone. Clay might've been able to save her if when he could be the one to save her all along if he had said what he truly felt. The author wanted to demonstrate how Clay’s decision not only made him turn away from Hannah truly isolating her from him which led to
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