Call Me By Your Name

by

André Aciman

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The Star of David Necklace Symbol Analysis

The Star of David Necklace Symbol Icon

Oliver’s Star of David Necklace is one of the first things Elio notices about him. As such, he quickly comes to see it as a representation of the ways in which they are bound to one another, since Elio himself is Jewish, too. Unlike Oliver, though, Elio struggles with his Jewish identity, coming from a family who describe themselves as “Jews of discretion.” As a result, Elio is shocked when he sees that Oliver wears a Star of David around his neck without tucking it into his shirt. “He was okay with being Jewish,” Elio writes. “He was okay with being himself, the way he was okay with his body, with his looks.” This self-confidence is remarkable to Elio because he can’t quite bring himself to embrace his own Jewishness or, for that matter, his sexual identity. Oliver, on the other hand, is at ease with who he is and, as such, doesn’t feel the need to hide his Star of David, which therefore comes to symbolize not only the connection he and Elio share, but also the self-possession and confidence he teaches Elio to embody.

The Star of David Necklace Quotes in Call Me By Your Name

The Call Me By Your Name quotes below all refer to the symbol of The Star of David Necklace. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Identity and Attraction Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Picador edition of Call Me By Your Name published in 2007.
Part 1: If Not Later, When? Quotes

I saw his star almost immediately during his first day with us. And from that moment on I knew that what mystified me and made me want to seek out his friendship, without ever hoping to find ways to dislike him, was larger than anything either of us could ever want from the other, larger and therefore better than his soul, my body, or earth itself. Staring at his neck with its star and telltale amulet was like staring at something timeless, ancestral, immortal in me, in him, in both of us, begging to be rekindled and brought back from its millenary sleep.

What baffled me was that he didn’t seem to care or notice that I wore one too. Just as he probably didn’t care or notice each time my eyes wandered along his bathing suit and tried to make out the contour of what made us brothers in the desert.

Related Characters: Elio (speaker), Oliver
Related Symbols: The Star of David Necklace
Page Number: 19
Explanation and Analysis:
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The Star of David Necklace Symbol Timeline in Call Me By Your Name

The timeline below shows where the symbol The Star of David Necklace appears in Call Me By Your Name. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part 1: If Not Later, When?
Identity and Attraction Theme Icon
Coming of Age and Maturity Theme Icon
...shirt and the scent of his skin. More than anything, though, he’s drawn to the Star of David hanging from a gold necklace around Oliver’s neck. This, Elio feels, connects them to each... (full context)
Part 2: Monet’s Berm
Identity and Attraction Theme Icon
Pain, Heartbreak, and Regret Theme Icon
Coming of Age and Maturity Theme Icon
Language and Communication Theme Icon
Time and Anticipation Theme Icon
...bedroom that night and act without hesitation, reaching out to touch him and letting their Stars of David touch. However, when he wakes up later that afternoon, Oliver is nowhere to be found.... (full context)