It

It

by

Stephen King

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Arlene Hanscom Character Analysis

Ben Hanscom’s mother. Arlene is a single mother and is thirty-two years old in 1958. She works forty hours per week in the spool-and-bale room at Stark’s Mills in Newport. Breathing in dust and lint all day has given her a bad cough. She overfeeds Ben, causing him to become obese. As an adult, Ben reasons that Arlene did this to assure herself that she had the resources to keep Ben from going hungry. Arlene moves Ben to Nebraska, where he attends high school. She becomes upset when he decides to lose weight, perceiving it as a rejection of her hard work to keep him fed.
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Arlene Hanscom Character Timeline in It

The timeline below shows where the character Arlene Hanscom appears in It. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 4: Ben Hanscom Takes a Fall
Storytelling and Memory Theme Icon
...get away from Henry Bowers. School has just let out past noon and his mother, Arlene Hanscom , will not be home until around six. He goes to McCarron Park and sits... (full context)
Evil and the Supernatural Theme Icon
Ben’s mother, Arlene Hanscom , warns him to come home every night by supper time during the summer. If... (full context)
Evil and the Supernatural Theme Icon
Fear and the Power of Fantasy Theme Icon
Storytelling and Memory Theme Icon
Arlene Hanscom asks Ben if he has ever seen anything out of the ordinary. Ben considers telling... (full context)
Chapter 8: Georgie’s Room and the House on Neibolt Street
Friendship and Loyalty Theme Icon
Storytelling and Memory Theme Icon
...with him but none can make it. He decides to look Ben up and finds Arlene Hanscom ’s name in the phone book. Ben has spent his allowance, but Richie offers to... (full context)
Chapter 10: The Reunion
Storytelling and Memory Theme Icon
...to go on a diet. Ben tells the story of how he and his mother, Arlene Hanscom , move to Nebraska in 1960. They stay with his aunt for a while, who... (full context)
Fear and the Power of Fantasy Theme Icon
Storytelling and Memory Theme Icon
...losing the weight. Ben says that he did, but that he first battled his mother, Arlene Hanscom , who refused to believe that he was fat. Ben reasons that it was scary... (full context)
Storytelling and Memory Theme Icon
...Nutrition class that one can eat as many greens as one wants without gaining weight. Arlene Hanscom , he realizes, does not care what he eats as long as he eats a... (full context)