301. “He knew that her body was his to engage in all the acrobatics he had learned in the books he kept hidden in a corner of his library, but with Clara even the most abominable contortions were like the thrashings of a newborn; it was impossible to spice them up with the salt of evil or the pepper of submission.”
319. “My heart is broken, he told himself. It was at that moment he understood the profound meaning of that common phrase: he thought he heard the sound of glass breaking and felt that the essence of his being was pouring out until he was empty, with no memory of the past, no awareness of the present, no hope for the future.”
328. “Two-thirds of those evacuated at that time had been born in the United States and were American citizens. Standing in long lines, the Japanese had to wait for hours in front of the desks of the officials, who took down their names and handed out labels for them to wear around their necks with their identity number, the same as for their luggage.”
333. “It bothers them that instead of taking on the role of abandoned lover, I have become a happy wife. They relish seeing strong women like you and me humiliated. They cannot forgive us that we triumphed where so many others fail... Courage is a virtue appreciated in a male but considered a defect in our gender. Bold women are a threat to a world that is out of balance, in favor of men. That is why they work so hard to mistreat and destroy us.”
334. “How would I run with my bad leg? And what would become of the people who need my care? Besides, it doesn’t mean anything for me to be free and everyone else slaves,” the healer answered. Tete hadn’t thought of that, and it kept buzzing around her brain like a bottlefly. She talked about it with her godmother many times, but she was never able to accept the idea that her freedom was irreparably bound to that of the other slaves.”
341. “Fourth of July picnic. And by the way, that picnic, like everything else in this land, is a model of efficiency: you drive at top speed, set up in a previously reserved space, spread out the baskets, bolt your food, kick the ball, and rush home to avoid the traffic. In Chile, a similar project would take three days.”
342. “I was terrified of being dependent too, Alma,” Dr. Catherine Hope told her one day. “But I’ve realized it’s not such a big deal. You get used to it, and are grateful for the assistance. I can’t dress or take a shower on my own, I have problems brushing my teeth and cutting the chicken on my plate, but I’ve never been more contented than I am now.”
347. “The Germans are not a race of psychopaths, Alma. They’re normal people like you and me, but with fanaticism, power, and impunity, anyone can turn into a monster, like the SS at Auschwitz,” he told his sister. “Do you think that, given the opportunity, you’d also behave like a monster, Samuel?” “I don’t think it, Alma, I know it. I’ve been a soldier all my life. I’ve been to war. I’ve interrogated prisoners, a large number of them. But I assume you don’t want details.”
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