How is Fatima portrayed in "The Alchemist"?

Expert Answers
Susan Woodward eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In "The Alchemist", Fatima is a woman of the desert.  According to the definition of that term in the novel, a woman of the desert accepts life as it comes, and she waits for her man who has gone out into the desert to return.  She represents the love between a man and a woman to Santiago.  On his journey, he has learned about the love of the Universe and the love of friendship, but it is through Fatima that he will learn the love between a husband and a wife.  She tells him that he must complete his destined dream or else he will come to resent her for staying (no matter how much he loves her now).  Once he completes his sacred purpose, she trusts that he will return to her and she will wait for him no matter how long it takes.  She is a symbol of fidelity and trust.