Jane and Katherine

The other day in class, I believe there was a moment where the potential for comparison and contrast between Jane and Katherine was proposed for discussion. In chapter 65, Katherine escapes the triage tent and “[marches] with her prisoners to the front steps of the soup kitchen…with a gun and thirty hostages” (354), surprising and overpowering (outsmarting) the RedBlacks who were there for her. At this moment, she really seems a lot more like Jane than she did before. 

The two women are alike in the text because they’re both clever, smart, and strategic. Also, they surprise and frustrate the men whose lives they impact. Those men seem perplexed in the moments where these two women have profound effects on the situation in this text (such as when Jane is destroying the city and leading the Norwegians and when Katherine pulls of this trick in chapter 65).

However, I notice that the two characters are different in that Jane is more destructive and blunt (although it might be important to recognize that out-right destruction was not her intent when we first met her), while Katherine is more subtly manipulative. This instance in chapter 65, though, demonstrates that Katherine becomes more assertive as the novel progresses. Finally, it’s interesting how differently the characters are received by the people around them. The Norwegians seem accepting of Katherine’s help, but they turn against Jane. Also, Mike even comes to express his love for Katherine as he is about to be tortured. Interestingly (maybe), Zvominir doesn’t like Jane or Katherine. 

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