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Dave Egger's The Circle

Decent Essays
The various sanctuaries presented in Dave Egger’s The Circle embody the role of a safe haven for a distressed character, Mae Holland. There are multiple instances presented in the novel, such as the bay, the Circle itself, and Mae’s friendship with Annie Allerton. However, the welcoming positions of each sanctuary are unfortunately temporary, and ultimately disconnected from Mae by the Circle’s surveillance cameras. The bay, the Circle, and Annie are established as safe havens Mae reaches out to during times of stress and discomfort, and disrupted eventually by the lack of privacy, to her unfortunate expense. Upon Mae’s entrance into her new workplace, the Circle, she is quickly overwhelmed by multiple screens (page 52), maintaining an aggregate…show more content…
In the very beginning of Mae’s career within the Circle, the reader is introduced to the company as “heaven” (page 1). However the mere presence of the gigantic company is not enough to distract her from her agonizing ex-boyfriend. After a false alarm from her dad’s MS, and a lecture from Mercer about the dangers of social media addiction, Mae seeks relief from her personal life. She “[logs] on . . . and handles a few dozen queries, feeling . . . that she was cleaning the Mercer off herself,” and “by midnight . . . felt reborn” (page 135). One prominent instance of the Circle being utilized in a parallel manner is evidenced when Mae returns to CE, despite being heavily promoted. She “[feels], already, all of the madness of her parents, of Mercer, evaporating like mist” (page 375-376). Furthermore, when she believes there are “368 votes to kill her,” (page 414), she returns to CE once again to fulfill her needs for security in the safe haven. However safety does not reside forever as Denise and Josiah render Mae very uncomfortable when she is confronted about why she has not been sharing every hobby and activity of hers with her zing following (page 275). Her discomfort over being questioned about her prioritization of her family over semi-mandatory events is revealed when Mae makes it clear that she is outside her comfort zone.…show more content…
Annie’s tremendous influence in Mae’s hiring into the Circle is highlighted when it is revealed that she “is part of . . . the Gang of 40,” and “set it all up within weeks of Mae . . . making the ask.” (page 14) Additionally, after a false warning of Mae’s father’s multiple sclerosis, (page 127) Annie “[twists] a few arms” (page 162) and is “[praised] . . . as the savior of [Mae’s] family.” (page 163) Additionally, Annie’s role as the savior is further heightened during Mae and Dan’s talk after Mae is caught “stealing” a kayak. When she believes she is going to be terminated, her thoughts “[remember] Annie. Could Annie save her?” (page 276) Another instance of Mae seeking comfort from Annie is during a panic moment when the tear reappears. Mae attempts to reach out to Annie (page 378). However, despite their seemingly strong friendship, Mae and Annie do not fully connect with one another again after it is proclaimed by Eamon Bailey that Mae will be going transparent (page 306). The Circle’s interference with her third sanctuary once again tarnishes a happy-place for
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