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Seeing the “real” Margo

Stage 1: The perfect Margo

“I always got very nervous whenever I heard that Margo was about to show up, on account of how she was the most fantastically gorgeous creature that God has ever created.”

p. 4, top
Can you find more examples from the text that show how Quentin thinks of Margo as perfect?

Stage 2: “… each of them imaginable and consistently misimagined.” – Imagined and “real” images of people.

We’re going to read Hour six, p. 256 – 257.


  1. What important thought crosses Quentin’s mind in this scene?
  2. Can you see a connection to the scene in the SunTrust building’s conference room and the different perspectives Margo and Quentin express about Orlando? Explain!
  3. Reflect on your own experience: Have you ever been in a situation in which you got to know someone more closely and realised that your image of that person has been incomplete, possibly even completely wrong? What does that tell us about our perception of the people around us and the world in general?

Is Margo just a normal person?

“The fundamental mistake I had always made—and that she had, in fairness, always led me to make—was this: Margo was not a miracle. She was not an adventure. She was not a fine and precious thing. She was a girl.”

p. 199
  1. Read that passage in the book, start from the top of p. 199.
  2. What is it that Quentin realizes in the paragraph quoted above?
  3. You could argue that this scene shows one very important development that happens with Quentin in the book. What is it? Explain!

Stage 3: Looking through the cracks

“Maybe it’s like you said before, all of us being cracked open. Like each of us starts out as a watertight vessel. And then things happen – these people leave us, or don’t love us, or don’t get us, or we don’t get them, and we lose and fail and hurt one another. And the vessel starts to crack in places. And I mean, yeah once the vessel cracks open, the end becomes inevitable. Once it starts to rain inside the Osprey, it will never be remodeled. But there is all this time between when the cracks start to open up and when we finally fall apart. And it’s only that time that we see one another, because we see out of ourselves through our cracks and into others through theirs. When did we see each other face to face? Not until you saw into my cracks and I saw into yours. Before that we were just looking at ideas of each other, like looking at your window shade, but never seeing inside. But once the vessel cracks, the light can get in. The light can get out.”

p. 302, top
  1. Try to explain – in your own words – what Quentin might mean in the section quoted above.
  2. In the point of view expressed in these words, what do the cracks do to us? Are they a good thing or a bad thing?
  3. What do you think – Can we ever hope to fully understand another person? How might the “cracks” in that person help us understand them?
englisch/paper-towns/margos-real-self.txt · Zuletzt geändert: 03.07.2018 (08:22) von retemirabile