John Mandel Station 11 Analysis

Decent Essays
Art and truth
Throughout the book Station Eleven by Emily St.John Mandel, the theme of memory, death, and literature are constant. The characters of the story are heavily involved with literature, from actors, to painters. Almost every character mentioned within the story is involved with some kind of art. Kirsten treasuring her Dr. Eleven comic books, August with his scavenged poetry, Arthur and the entire Traveling Symphony with their preserved performances, and Miranda with her life's work, Dr. Eleven. And, throughout the post-apocalyptic setting of the narrative, characters of the story are attempting to grab fragments of art to paint a picture of what the world was once was before, or use then as an escape tool from the depressing post apocalyptic setting, or even used as a guide to how to live one’s life. Thus, literature is an essential object to have as it provides people with a sense of morality, a coping method for depression, and a truth that transcends historical facts.
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Unlike the fellow survivors of the Georgian flu, who seem to have a vicious animal like instinct, the protagonists seem to have a sense of mercy and equality. They tend to sneak past death when possible. Another difference one can spot in the Traveling Symphony is their connection with the arts and literature. The arts and literature provide a morality for the Traveling Symphony. Other scavengers of the post-catastrophic world have a dictatorship setup as shown in Chapter 10 of the novel as a man named “the Prophet” rules over the small population with an iron fist. Meanwhile, the traveling symphony use a kinder approach with their miniscule population by treating everyone as they would have been treated in the pre-catastrophic setting. Thus, one can observe that the effects of literature can give others a morality where morality would not
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