Ethan's strength of attractionHow do you explain the strength of Ethan’s attraction to Mattie?  Why is she so important to him? (from chapter 1 and 2)

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litteacher8's profile pic

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Sometimes we grow attached to people we spend a lot of time with, whether we intend to or not. I concur that Ethan finds Mattie a welcome distraction from the drudgery and monotony of the white landscape of his life, both literally and metaphorically.
litteacher8's profile pic

Posted on

Sometimes we grow attached to people we spend a lot of time with, whether we intend to or not. I concur that Ethan finds Mattie a welcome distraction from the drudgery and monotony of the white landscape of his life, both literally and metaphorically.
kplhardison's profile pic

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One reason Mattie is important to Ethan is that she offers him some distraction from the continual interior, anxious focus caring for an ill (and ill-mannered!) person generates. She gives him opportunity to think of things outside his restricted personal life. She gives him the presence of vital life and cheer. Painfully ironic is the tragic loss of these very qualities from the life they go on to share together.

lmetcalf's profile pic

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Mattie is a refreshing youthful and attractive young woman and Ethan can't help but notice that she is completely different from the landscape, the house and his wife. It is revealed in Chapter 1 that Mattie and Ethan walk together in the evenings. It is during these times that Ethan could share with Mattie all that he had learned and

the fact that admiration for his learning mingled with Mattie's wonder at what he taught was not the least part of his pleasure. There were other sensations, less definable but more exquisite, which drew them together with a shock of silent joy.

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