2.1 Different roles and characters between Henry and Clare 2
2.1.1 Clare's life mentor 2
2.1.2 An average couple 3
2.1.3 A confused man 4
2.2 The Effect of Time Travel on Love 5
2.2.1 Advantage 6
2.2.2 Disadvantage 7
2.3.The great power of everlasting love 8
2.3.1.Their child 8
2.3.2. Henry’s death 8
Works Citied 10
Time Shifts and Power of Love: A Study of The Time Traveler’s Wife
Audrey Niffenegger is an American writer who has written several books: The Spinster, Aberrant Abecedarium, The Murderer and so on. Audrey Niffenegger has her own magic in style and theme just like all the classic literary masters who show their own respective style and technique.
The Time Traveler’s Wife is the first work of Audrey Niffenegger. This novel was published in 2003 which has been classified as both science fiction and romance, exploring a great number of issues, such as love, loss, and free will. Global sales are more than 5millions.
This novel tells the love story of a man Henry and her wife Clare. Henry is a special man with "space-time order damage". He started to time travel when he was five years old. Since then, he has time traveled randomly, and he can’t control when and where he will go. In Clare’s eyes, more then forty-year old Henry travels to her childhood and adolescence in the South Haven when she is six-year old. It’s the first time for Clare to know Henry. And she has known Henry has the ability of time traveling since then. Nonetheless, for twenty five-year old Henry, when they met in the library, it’s the first time that he knew Clare. When Henry is 28, they get married. Henry time travels only a few times before and after their wedding. So they live in peace and security during that period. In this sense, the novel can be divided into three parts. First, Henry travels into the past when Clare is still very young. He plays a role of Clare’s life mentor. Second, Henry doesn’t time travel. He meets Clare of his age and they fall in love with each other and are an average couple. Third, Henry in 30s travels into the future and meets Clare who gets along with the older Henry in 40s. Clare helps the young Henry and tells him how to go on his life.
In The Time Traveler's Wife, besides the romantic love between the couples, many relations have been presented, like the relationship between the family members and friends and so on. Many scholars research the relationship between the members and friends. However, it lacks profound research as a new novel, which can make deep comprehension about a lot of things such as the different relationship between Henry and Clare and the everlasting love.
This paper aims at researching these changes of roles of and relationship between the two major characters and exploring how the changes help to convey the theme of the novel that no matter what happens, love is everlasting. The first part examines different roles of and relationship between Henry and Clare. The second part analyzes the effect of time travel on the two lovers’ relationship. The third part explores the great power of love showed by Henry and Clare’s relationship.
2.1 Different roles and characters between Henry and Clare
The paper researches changes of Henry and Clare’s characters and relations in three different times. Henry travels to Clare's childhood when she is six-year old. And Clare knows that Henry has the ability of time traveling since then. When Henry travels back into the past, Henry plays a role of Clare’s life mentor. On the one hand, whatever he drops in or out of her life, he is always a perfect gentleman and serves like a father or a friend, giving Clare nothing but his friendship. On the other hand, Clare sticks to her love and never flirts with other boys when she is young. So they have laid the foundation of their love since then. When Henry doesn’t time travel, Clare is between 20 to 25 years old. They are an average couple. They experience the marriage and have a baby. So their love has developed rapidly during this phase. When Henry travels into the future, Clare plays a role of Henry’s life mentor. She teaches Henry how to go on his life and tells him what will happen in the following years. Whether the man that Clare meets is the future Henry or the past Henry, she still gives her all love to him. No matter what the character is, the love between Henry and Clare is everlasting.
2.1.1 Clare's life mentor
More than forty-year old Henry travels to Clare's childhood and adolescence in the South Haven, Michigan in 1977 when she is six-years old. On one of his early visits, Henry gives a list of dates he will appear and she writes them in a diary so that she will remember to provide some clothes and food for him. In another visit, he inadvertently reveals that they will be married in the future. Over time they develop a close relationship. The last visit of them before marriage is in 1989, which is Clare's birthday, during which they make love for the first time. Then they are separated for two years until meeting at the library.
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