The Portable Phonograph by Walter Van Tilburg Clark

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Who are the characters in The Portable Phonograph by Walter Van Tilburg Clark? This is a study guide question posted by eNotes Editorial. Please write a separate paragraph of analysis for each key...

Who are the characters in The Portable Phonograph by Walter Van Tilburg Clark? This is a study guide question posted by eNotes Editorial. Please write a separate paragraph of analysis for each key character you discuss.

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Dr. Jenkins

The main character of the story is a very old man named Dr. Jenkins. He lives in a cave-like tunnel near a frozen stream in a barren landscape that has been ruined by a catastrophic war. Other men come to listen to him read from the handful of books he was able to save and to listen to his phonograph and his few records.

Jenkins says that he "saved what [he] love[s]" and "the soul of what was good in us here." He seems to hope that the next people who come to live in this place—most of the old population was killed in the war—will make use of the things that he saved: the things that show the good that was possessed by the people who almost destroyed the earth and...

(The entire section contains 398 words.)

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