Klara and the Sun

by

Kazuo Ishiguro

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The Father Character Analysis

The Father is Josie’s father and the Mother’s ex-husband. A talented engineer, he is still on speaking terms with the Mother, but they often disagree about what’s best for Josie, particularly when it comes to the mysterious Mr. Capaldi, who wants to help the Mother create a portrait of Josie (the “portrait” is actually a robot clone) that can “continue” her if she ever dies. The father lives in an insular community that Miss Helen calls “fascistic,” but the Father believes his community is simply preparing to defend itself from real threats. The nature of these threats is never specified, and many aspects of the Father’s life remain mysterious, although it is implied that outside of the relatively comfortable area where Josie lives, many parts of world are more violent. The Father helps Klara destroy a Cootings Machine (which Klara hopes will please the Sun by reducing pollution). The Father’s interest in engineering symbolically connects him to Josie’s inventive friend Rick, and so the disintegration of the Mother and the Father’s relationship foreshadows how Josie and Rick will both grow up to value different things in life.

The Father Quotes in Klara and the Sun

The Klara and the Sun quotes below are all either spoken by The Father or refer to The Father. 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:
The Meaning of Love Theme Icon
).
Part Four Quotes

He clearly wished to greet Josie with an embrace, and looked around for somewhere to put down the paper bag, but Josie stepped forward and put her arms around him, paper bag and all. As he received her embrace, his gaze wandered around the room and fell on me. Then he looked away and closed his eyes, letting his cheek rest against the top of her head. They stayed like that for a time, keeping very still, not even rocking slowly the way the Mother and Josie did sometimes during their morning farewells.

Related Characters: Klara (speaker), The Father, Josie, The Mother
Page Number: 185
Explanation and Analysis:

I turned the corner of the L and saw Josie there, suspended in the air. She wasn’t very high—her feet were at the height of my shoulders—but because she was leaning forward, arms outstretched, fingers spread, she seemed to be frozen in the act of falling. Little beams illuminated her from various angles, forbidding her any refuge. Her face was very like that of the real Josie, but because there was at the eyes no kind smile, the upward curve of her lips gave her an expression I’d never seen before. The face looked disappointed and afraid.

Related Characters: Klara (speaker), Josie, Mr. Capaldi, The Father, The Mother
Page Number: 201
Explanation and Analysis:

“You know, Klara. I don’t even know what this is about. But I want what’s best for Josie. Exactly the same as you. So I’m willing to grasp at any chance that comes our way.”

I turned to him with a smile and nodded. “Yes,” I said. “Then let’s try.”

Related Characters: The Father (speaker), Klara (speaker), Josie
Related Symbols: The Cootings Machine, The Sun
Page Number: 224
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Klara and the Sun LitChart as a printable PDF.
Klara and the Sun PDF

The Father Character Timeline in Klara and the Sun

The timeline below shows where the character The Father appears in Klara and the Sun. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part Two
The Meaning of Love Theme Icon
...she discovers even more feelings the more she observes. They talk about Josie’s father (the Father)—he works at a place on the way to the falls, and he and the Mother... (full context)
Part Four
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...Klara, and the Mother go to Mr. Capaldi’s studio. The Mother is tense because the Father is coming to see Josie. The Father is late arriving in his taxi. (full context)
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At last, the Father arrives. He gives Josie a present: a small mirror that shows her face how it... (full context)
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In the car, the Father and the Mother argue about their careers and about the portrait. Meanwhile, Klara notices that... (full context)
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Klara, Josie, the Mother, and the Father enter Mr. Capaldi’s house. The Mother asks to see the portrait, and Mr. Capaldi agrees,... (full context)
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...answer. He leads Klara to a separate room. While he does, they can hear the Father and the Mother having an argument about something being “not consistent.” Klara begins the questionnaire. (full context)
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...that require longer answers. As she’s doing the assignment, she notices Mr. Capaldi leading the Father somewhere on the opposite balcony. The Father looks suddenly ill. They go into a room,... (full context)
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Klara overhears the Father, the Mother, and Mr. Capaldi arguing, with the Father taking issue with Mr. Capaldi’s ethics.... (full context)
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...goes back to where she was and finds the mood is even more tense. The Father is trying to make Josie leave immediately. Mr. Capaldi says to just let them go,... (full context)
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The Mother drives Klara to outside the burger place where Josie and the Father are, but the Mother decides that Josie and the Father could use some time together.... (full context)
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The Mother goes into the hamburger restaurant, then the Father comes out without Josie. The Father tells Klara that the Mother recommended they drive around.... (full context)
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The Father begins to drive Klara around, asking if there’s anywhere particular place she’d like to go—like,... (full context)
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...the store. She talks about destroying the Cootings Machine to stop its pollution. Since the Father is an engineer, Klara wonders if he can help. The Father is confused, but Klara... (full context)
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Faith and Hope Theme Icon
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The Father is still confused, but he agrees to help Klara disable the Cootings Machine. They make... (full context)
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The Father finally explains that there is a substance called P-E-G Nine that can be put into... (full context)
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Costs and Benefits of Progress Theme Icon
Faith and Hope Theme Icon
Environmentalism Theme Icon
The Father warns that, if there is any impact related to removing P-E-G Nine from Klara, it... (full context)
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...connections to Atlas Brookings, the college that accepts some unlifted students. Miss Helen tells the Father that she’s worried about meeting Vance again because she used to be passionate with him... (full context)
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Miss Helen suggests that the Father and Vance might get along because they both have fascistic leanings. The Father tries to... (full context)
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The Father, Josie, Klara, Miss Helen, and Ricky all leave the sushi café. The Sun is nearly... (full context)
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Just then, the Father comes up to the Mother and asks if she told Josie everything. The Mother admits... (full context)