The Mortifications Quotes

Derek Palacio
This Study Guide consists of approximately 49 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Mortifications.
This section contains 1,377 words
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Ulises Encarnacion did not believe in fate."
-- Narrator (Section 1 ("The Land") paragraph 1)

Importance: The first line of the novel introduces the reader to the major theme of fate and sets up the story as a tragedy. It starts the novel's running allusions to Homer’s epic The Odyssey, as Ulises is the Roman name for the tragic hero Odysseus. As the novel progresses, the narrator comments on Ulises's changing perspective on fate, until he eventually accepts the idea of fate and his return to Cuba.

That’s because sons have a tendency to become their fathers. There’s nothing to remember when you assume another man’s life. It just becomes your own.”
-- Henri Willems (Section 1 ("The Land") paragraph 2)

Importance: This quote channels the novel's running theme of fate, or destiny. These words rings true for Willems, who followed his father's footsteps to work in the tobacco farming industry, and become a portent for Ulises, who subsequently starts working on Willems's tobacco plantation...

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This section contains 1,377 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Mortifications Study Guide
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