Life After Life

Life After Life

by

Kate Atkinson

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Crighton Character Analysis

One of Ursula’s lovers during World War II. Crighton is an Admiral in the Navy, having fought in World War I. He is fifteen years older than Ursula. When they begin their affair, Crighton is married with daughters. In some timelines, Crighton breaks off their relationship at the beginning of the war; in others, he separates from his wife, and he and Ursula move in together.

Crighton Quotes in Life After Life

The Life After Life quotes below are all either spoken by Crighton or refer to Crighton. 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:
Life, Reincarnation, and Alternate Possibilities Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Hachette edition of Life After Life published in 2013.
A Long Hard War, Nov 1940 Quotes

Some hours later they had both woken up at the same time and made love. It was the kind of love (lust, to be honest about it) that survivors of disasters must practice—or people who are anticipating disaster—free of all restraint, savage at times and yet strangely tender and affectionate.

Related Characters: Ursula Todd, Crighton, Ralph, Fred Smith
Page Number: 441
Explanation and Analysis:
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Life After Life PDF

Crighton Character Timeline in Life After Life

The timeline below shows where the character Crighton appears in Life After Life. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
A Lovely Day Tomorrow (I), 2 September 1939
Family and Love Theme Icon
Gender Roles and Expectations Theme Icon
Pamela asks how “The Man from the Admiralty” is. Ursula has been involved with Crighton for a year. He is fifteen years older than Ursula, married, and has three daughters.... (full context)
War and Death Theme Icon
Crighton had been at the Battle of Jutland and had “seen much,” but his life had... (full context)
A Lovely Day Tomorrow (I), November 1940
War and Death Theme Icon
Ursula is no longer seeing Crighton—the declaration of war had made him guilty, and they had parted ways, even though he... (full context)
Gender Roles and Expectations Theme Icon
...works in the same building as Ursula. Ralph is sardonic, leftwing, utopian, and nothing like Crighton. (full context)
Gender Roles and Expectations Theme Icon
The previous day Crighton had sent Ursula a note, asking if she had seen a gold engraved cigarette case... (full context)
A Lovely Day Tomorrow (II), 2 September 1939
War and Death Theme Icon
Gender Roles and Expectations Theme Icon
That evening Ursula meets Crighton (summoned by a coy note) for dinner at the Savoy. She wears one of her... (full context)
A Lovely Day Tomorrow (II), April 1940
Gender Roles and Expectations Theme Icon
...takes off the wedding ring she wears for appearances’ sake when she’s not at work. Crighton kisses her goodbye and tells her to have a nice time. (full context)
Family and Love Theme Icon
Gender Roles and Expectations Theme Icon
Ursula interrupts Maurice to say that she doesn’t feel “on the shelf,” and wishes that Crighton were there at the table. Teddy supports her, saying she does all right on her... (full context)
Life, Reincarnation, and Alternate Possibilities Theme Icon
War and Death Theme Icon
Ursula returns to Crighton and tells him tales of the day as they lie in bed drinking hot chocolate.... (full context)
A Lovely Day Tomorrow (II), November 1940
Life, Reincarnation, and Alternate Possibilities Theme Icon
Gender Roles and Expectations Theme Icon
...Ralph—who had made it clear that he wanted them to mean more to each other. Crighton calls Ralph her “other man.” (full context)
A Lovely Day Tomorrow (III), September 1940
War and Death Theme Icon
Ursula misses Crighton. He had invited her to dinner the night before the war was declared only to... (full context)
A Long Hard War, October 1940 (I)
Gender Roles and Expectations Theme Icon
...and go to bed together. They had then had sex (though Ursula had thought of Crighton the whole time). (full context)
Life, Reincarnation, and Alternate Possibilities Theme Icon
...herself as Renee, and offered Ursula a cigarette; Ursula realized the cigarette case belonged to Crighton. Ursula returned to the lounge, and she, Jimmy and Millie then went drinking all evening.... (full context)
A Long Hard War, May 1941
Gender Roles and Expectations Theme Icon
Ursula meets up with Crighton and returns his cigarette case. When Ursula tells him where she found it, he says... (full context)
A Long Hard War, November 1943
Life, Reincarnation, and Alternate Possibilities Theme Icon
Family and Love Theme Icon
War and Death Theme Icon
...contrast, has wept continuously for days, and had to be comforted like a child by Crighton and Miss Woolf. Now she feels nothing. (full context)