Key Quotes for 'Prologue' (Remains of the Day)

Quotes in Red

Themes in Black

Further analysis in Blue

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  • Created on: 07-05-16 15:09

Page 3

"In the comfort of Mr Farraday's Ford" -- Class, Indoors and Outdoors, Objects, Master and Servant, History as it presents a sanitsied view of it (consider context)

"I don't expect you to be locked up in here"-- Indoors and Outdoors, Stevens feels safe indoors as it is his domain

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Page 4

"American gentleman's unfamilarly with what was and what was not...done in England" -- Englishness and Americanness, Stevens sees Mr Farraday as inferior as he doesn't understand British ways

"over the years, sir... I mean it, Stevens" -- Class, Master and Servant, both still maintain their class attitudes despite discussing an informal matter (Stevens' holiday)

"within these very walls" -- Repression, Indoors and Outdoors, History, Stevens' life until this point has mostly been in Darlington Hall, his domain, but so much has happened in relation to history here and not just to Stevens' life that has impacted the world that Steven's doesn't know outside Darlington's walls

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Page 5

"I had become blind to the obvious" -- Denial, Blindness, Emotions

"one was not accustomed to committing such errors" -- Errors, Dignity

"notion of the trip to the West Country" -- Duty, Rural England, Stevens doubts or has lack of support for the idea

"the responsiblity of every butler to devote his utmost care in the devising of a staff plan" -- Duty

"a series of small errors" -- Errors

"Miss Kenton's letter set off a certain train of ideas to do with professional matters" -- Repression, Miss Kenton may have given him something to think about but we can infer that it was not just professional matters. This is one of the first hints we get that there was something more between Miss Kenton and Stevens than just "professional matters"

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Page 6

"skeleton team of six" -- Humour, Making light of a tricky situation

"Mr Farraday shook my hands for the first time" -- Hands, professional relationship 

"blame can be laid at no one' door but my own" -- Duty, Errors, Doors, takes it upon himself to take responsibility for the faults

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Page 7

"Recalling a time when I had had a staff of seventeen under me" -- Nostalgia, History, Context, Time long past considering that old houses needed fewer servants in the 40's/50's

"Mr Farraday...made his request of me" -- Master and Servant, Class

"no virtue at all... merely for it's own sake" -- Duty

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Page 8

"...I came up with a plan which... not exactly as Mr Farraday had requested, was the best" -- Master and Servant, Britishness and Americanness, slightly superior to Mr Farraday through his extensive past knowledge

"I spent many hours working on the staff plan" -- Duty, Time, long process but it needs to be perfect in its function; makes sure that everyone od capable and happy

"...go about the task Mr Farraday had set me with some dedication"-- Duty, carrying out his task to the best of his ability

"I did all I could to see that Mrs Clements suffered the least adjustments" -- Duty, Emotions, Stevens proves himself to be considerate for her but means that he "undertook for myself a number of duties"

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Page 9

"It is a bad staff plan"-- Errors

"Stringently my own limitations" -- Trivialities

"broad minded of a butler to do"-- Duty

"You will no doubt agree" -- Dignity

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Page 10

"unmistakable nostalgia for Darlington Hall" -- Nostalgia, Darlington Hall is Stevens home in a sense so he would feel extreme nostalgia for it

"her great affection for this house"-- Nosalgia, Repression, Emotions, Miss Kenton not only feels nostalgic about Darlington but also misses Stevens and the life she could have had with him

"I have...reread Miss Kenton's letter several times"-- Nostalgia, Repression, Stevens is equally repressing his feelings about Miss Kenton

"distinct hints of her desire to return here" -- Nostalgia, Repression, Did she actually leave hints or was Stevens finding non-existent hints in Miss Kenton's letter? 

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Page 11

"a number of splendid suits" -- Clothing and Apperance, Status, Humble attitude with regard to the suits as they were all passed down to him

"suitable travelling clothes"-- Clothing and Appearance, Indoors and Outdoors, Stevens had no suitable clothes (only posh clothes) so lacks knowledge of the world out his job

"Mrs Symons' The Wonder Of England"-- Rural England, History, Doesn't consider that Englad has changed since the war

"written during the thirties" -- History, Context, Time, Uses an old book because he doesn't believ that England has changed since the war.

"one never knows when one might be obliged to give out that one is from Darlington Hall" -- Dignity, Hero Worship, Appears proud of Darlington Hall but as the book continues we realise that this is less pride and more concern

"new costume" -- Clothing and Appearance, Repression, Stevens hides behind a mask, that mask being butlering

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Page 12

"I do not imagine German bombs have altered our countryside so significantly"-- Rural England, History, Blindness, Context, Refering to how bombs have affected the British landscape since the war, His blindness shows his 'sanitised' view of Britain and shiows that Stevens is 'distinctly out of touch with the modern world' (Judy Simons)

"to raise the matter again... he would no longer be approving of the idea"-- Master and Servant, Dignity, Englishness and Americanness, Stevens always has to get his employer's permission, He is humbled but often doubts Farraday

"my growing exitement at the notion that I might...undertake a motoring trip" -- Emotions, Journey

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Page 13

"light- hearted humourous sort" -- Humour

"[Farraday] will usually have returned from his short walk" -- Master and Servant, Stevens shows concern for his employer (caring nature or worried that he has no life outside of his job?)

"bantering tone" -- Bantering

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Page 14

"he is, after all, an American gentleman and his ways are often different" --Englishness and Americanness, Stevens alienates Mr Farraday based on the fact that he American and doesn't understand British ways 

"Mr Farraday seized the opportunity to grin broadly at me" --Master and Servant, Class, Shows a close relationship between Stevens and Farraday despite the fact that Farraday is the Master of Stevens, Farraday doesn't see a split between the two of them

"I paused rather abruptly" --Dignity

"You will...appreciate how uncomfortable a situation this was for me" -- Dignity

"My, my, Stevens. A lady-friend. And at your age" -- Bantering

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Page 15

"enjoying the sort of bantering" -- Bantering

"he was making some sort of joke" -Bantering, Humour, Duty, Repression, Alienation of humour as he has become nothing more than his job

"during my first days under Mr Farraday" -- Duty, Master and Servant

"continued to stand there awkwardly" -- Clothing and Appearance

"employer was imputing to me" -- Duty, Master and Servant

"employer and employee" --Master and Servant

"some residue of my bewilderment, not to say shock, remained detectable in my expression" -- Emotion, Repression, Clothing and Appearance, He tries to hide his emotions but every now and then the mask slips (this is an example of this slip)

"I was once or twice quite astounded by some of the things he would say to me" -- Englishness and Americanness, Doesn't understand American ways so sees them as scandlous 

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Page 16

"he would not be chatting to us in a friendly manner...instead would be assaulting us with crude references" -- Englishness and Americanness, Class, Suggesting that American's are more primal in comparison to British people

"never be sure of what was expected of me" -- Duty

"business of bantering is not a duty" -- Duty, Bantering

"how would one know...that... a response of the bantering sort is... expected?" -- Bantering

"smile with the correct manner" -- Duty 

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Page 17

"whether or not I was expected to reciprocate my employer's bantering" -- Duty, Bantering, Master and Servant, Stevens is unsure about what is expected from him 

"More like swallows than crows...from the migratory aspect"-- Humour,  Stevens attempts to banter but doesn't succeed, Provides humour for the reader

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Page 18

"One does not have the means to discuss and corroborate" -- Bantering

"Mr Farraday is not satisfied with my responses" --Bantering, Master and Servant

"witnessed debates over the great affairs preoccupying our employers upstairs" -- Master and Servant

"we could be found discussing every aspect of our vocation" -- Working Class Culture, Don't have much of a life outside of their work

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Page 19

"whose lively presence made any visit memorable" --Master and Servant, Status, Comment that butler's should be more reserved

"I look forward to the visit" -- Master and Servant

"essentially cut from the same cloth"-- Working Class Culture, Same roles in society so have no true defining features

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Page 20

"I would have liked to have discovered what had become of Mr Graham... I would say we had got on" -- Nostalgia, Pathos, Time, Working Class Culture, Closest thing Stevens had to a friend, Foreshadows the end of butlering

"surprised and disappointed to discover... that Sir James would be coming alone" --Emotions, Nostalgia, Pathos, Shows a little emotion

"He gave his kind permission" -- Master and Servant

"his generous offer" -- Master and Servant, Stevens is thankful despite being reluctant

"matter of costumes" -- Clothing and Appearances, Repression, Continues talking about costumes (repressing his emotions and hiding his identity)

"went about his bantering" -- Bantering 

"I responded as usual by smiling slightly" -- Repression

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