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Till We Have Faces: Chapters 16 January 15, 2007

Posted by Danielle in Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis.
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We are discussing chapter 16. Leave and check out comments below.

What do you think about Orual’s decision to now have her face veiled?

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1. bethany3boys - January 16, 2007

I find it interesting that once again Orual is not telling the whole truth…Hiding her self-wounding from the Fox so that he would not rebuke her for putting that kind of pressure on Psyche.

As far as the veil I think it is to hide her shame more than her looks. On page 179 when she is in discussion with Fox how she got Psyche to turn on the lamp she thought this during her answers.

“I had taken off, while I ate, the veil I had worn all day; now I greatly wished I had it on”

I do think later on the veil ends up being more than a way to hide shame I believe it becomes a part of her…a way for her to rule and lead and appear strong and mysterious. She mentions on page 182 after talking and confronting the King…

“To see his face while he could not see mine seemed to give me a kind of power.”

But I think the whole decision to start wearing it is to hide her shame…not her ugly appearance but the ugly guilt she was carrying for what she did to her sister. I think she knew that would show on her face.

2. Michelle - January 17, 2007

I would agree with you Bethany.

3. Danielle - January 17, 2007

Yes, Bethany. I too think it covers her shame as well as gives her a kind of power and mystery, which she seems to enjoy.

4. heather - January 19, 2007

I agree with you, too, Bethany, that the ugliness she’s hiding under her veil has more to do with what she’s done than with what she looks like.

In spite of what Orual did to Psyche, I felt sorry for her in this chapter. To me, the veil seems symbolic of the wall that Orual has erected around herself. I felt sorry for her because she could no longer find refuge and comfort with the Fox. That relationship was such an important one to Orual, and now her lack of honesty and openness is tarnishing it.

I thought it interesting that what torments her is a sound — something the veil can’t block out, and something she can’t seal away in Psyche’s room.

5. bethany3boys - January 20, 2007

Heather I love your point about the sound…something she can’t block out. I never thought of that.


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