How does Ishiguro present Kathy and Ruth’s attitudes towards their futures?

Ishiguro, the writer of the novel Never Let Me Go, presents Kathy and Ruth’s attitudes towards their futures as very contradicting. Whilst Kathy is optimistic about their futures, Ruth’s attitudes are very different. She thinks that they will have no futures at all.

The children at Hailsham intuitively recognise that there is something awful awaiting them, even though they are deliberately shielded from the full horror of their future by the adults. Kathy explains that no matter how much the guardians try to prepare the children, they cannot truly “bring...home” the truth when they behave so kindly to the children, and when the gardeners and the delivery man joke and laugh with you and call you “sweetheart”. The words “joke” and “laugh” suggest the kind of joyfulness which characterises the most carefree and perfect of childhoods, and the endearment “sweetheart” reveals the tenderness with which the adults at Hailsham treat the pupils. It is no wonder therefore that the pupils are so confused about their futures as they have been raised to expect happy, fulfilling lives and to be treated like valued human beings. However, the pupils have grasped enough about the reality of their situation to be “waiting...waiting for the moment when you realise that you really are different to them” The word “waiting” suggests expectancy-deep down, the pupils know that one day there will be forced to confront the fact that they are “different” to everyone else that they are simply clones created to provide to healthy organs to others. Alongside expectancy, “waiting” can carry connotations of anxiety, and even dread. However they might be protected by the adults around them, the children still have an inkling of what awaits them and this knowledge has infiltrated the happy bubble of Hailsham. In a wider sense, therefore…


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