The Children of Men

by

P. D. James

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Harriet Marwood Character Analysis

Head of Health, Science, and Recreation on the Council of England. She is the oldest member of the Council, and its “universal grandmother.” Theo notes her reassuring nature and her ability to make it “impossible not to believe that all is for the best” during her public addresses. It was her idea that Xan wear the egregious Coronation Ring, marking him as the Warden. She believes that “people need their rights of passage,” and is a staunch defender of the practice of the Quietus.
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Harriet Marwood Character Timeline in The Children of Men

The timeline below shows where the character Harriet Marwood appears in The Children of Men. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 11
History, Mythology, and Memory Theme Icon
Fatalism and Despair vs. Action and Hope Theme Icon
Power and Ambition Theme Icon
...and Production, and is the member of the council “closest to a friend” of Xan’s; Harriet Marwood, the oldest member and the “universal grandmother” of the council, is in charge of... (full context)
Chapter 12
History, Mythology, and Memory Theme Icon
Power and Ambition Theme Icon
...on his left hand. Xan notices Theo eyeing the ring, and insists that it was Harriet’s idea he wear it. “The people,” he says, “need their baubles.” Theo tells Xan that... (full context)
Fatalism and Despair vs. Action and Hope Theme Icon
Power and Ambition Theme Icon
...that particular Quietus was “mismanaged” and promises “appropriate action will be taken against those responsible.” Harriet chimes in, claiming that “people need their rites of passage,” and want to “feel the... (full context)
Chapter 33
Fatalism and Despair vs. Action and Hope Theme Icon
Apocalypse: Revelation, Renewal, and Redemption Theme Icon
...the Council members in and orders the Grenadiers to take Xan’s body away. Once inside, Harriet and Felicia approach Julian and the child. Harriet reaches out a finger, and the baby... (full context)