Nostalgia In Mandel's Station Eleven

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“Toronto existing in layers” (Mandel) and such is the impression of Miranda as she ventures once more into the vast city of Toronto, after her time in New York. Upon her arrival in the city, a pang of nostalgia hits her as she reminisces her first arrival: “she’d always liked the descent into this city, the crowded towers by the lakeshore, the way an infinite ocean of suburbia rushed inward and came to a point at the apex of the CN Tower…the city had shocked her with its vastness when she’d arrived…” (Mandel). Such descriptions might appear as mere imageries of the city, for these are common sights—the crowded city, the suburbs, and the CN--one can see when travelling into the city of Toronto. It is a familiar setting and something that is …show more content…

For instance, had the novel been set in a fictional place, there would be no familiarity or attachment to the setting at hand. It is worth noting as well that Toronto is the heart of the novel itself: it is first connection between the intertwining life of the characters. With this connection, it serves as a foundation for the city to be a symbol of nostalgia, change, and freedom. As a symbol of nostalgia, it is evident every time the characters mention the city: they say it with such a wistful tone; it is also mentioned in flashbacks – the idea of looking back into the past. And with the Georgia Flu outbreak, Toronto changes and this change reflects the impact on not only the characters but humanity as a whole. Intertwined with change, of course, is freedom. The physical change which the characters have experienced has led to their lives being freed in different ways, such as being free from Delano Island, or, being free from life itself. With these observations, they prove that Toronto is a physical manifestation of Station Eleven’s main themes, which contribute to further understanding these concepts. Along with this, it reinforces the significance of analysing a novel’s setting as it reveals a deeper comprehension of the story. Henceforth, it suffices to say that setting is indeed a major component of a story, for without a setting,

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