Station Eleven: Part 2 and Part 3

Continuing with the book, Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel continues off from the first part of the book onto the future in which we see the main protagonist Kirsten rehearsing for the next play as they are traveling down Lake Michigan. It’s been twenty years after the flu ha–ps wiped out humanity almost completely, and now the status of progress within society has begun to digress, however people still keep the past alive in actions and memories. Kristen seems to be trapped in the past, remembering the actor that died in the first section of the book. “There were countless things about the pre-collapse world that Kristen couldn’t remember – her street address, her mother’s face, the TV shows that August never stopped talking about—but she did remember Arthur Leander.” (Mandel, 40), this shows how Arthur Leander’s gesture of giving her comics before he passed away so suddenly, and as the book mentions Kristen remembers other things that should be important comics, gives an insight on how important acting and the influence he had on her was. August a young boy enjoyed television, obsessed with classical music, and played the violin. For him, he keeps the past alive in his interest of T.V., “When they broke into houses now, August searched for issues of TV Guide. Mostly obsolete by the time the pandemic hit, but used by a few people right up to the end. He liked to flip through them later at quiet moments.” (Mandel, 39-40), as we can see technology was of no use as the flu rampaged through the world unless it was being used to find a cure.

If we continue to section three we are learning more about the past and how significant it is for Kristen’s keep sake of the two comics, “Dr. Eleven, Vol 1, No. 1: Station Eleven and Dr. Eleven, Vol 1, No 2: The Pursuit” (Mandel, 42), in which Arthur’s wife Miranda is writing the novel “Station Eleven”. However, before she became Arthur’s wife, her boyfriend Pablo wouldn’t support her dreams and that is something that she was looking for and was trapped in when living with Pablo. “You’re always half on Station Eleven,” Pablo said during a fight a week or so ago, “and I don’t even understand your project. What are you actually going for here?” (Mandel, 87), this explains how unhappy she was in the relationship and ironically, she also becomes unhappy in the marriage with Arthur after three years of marriage. Arthur goes on to have an affair and thankfully, Miranda goes onto publish the comic, Station Eleven. We can prove this simply because Arthur hands Kristen the comic to keep, which has stood the test of time. As of now, Kristen has both comics memorized by heart. Something that shows us that the future can be saved so long as the people that have survived can retain history and be able to move on into the future, regardless of any conflicts from people around the world.

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