The Circle

Kayaking Symbol Icon

At various points in the novel, Mae Holland goes kayaking. She loves to kayak because it provides her with some alone time in which she doesn’t have to think about her friends, her job, or her family. Kayaking symbolizes the power of solitude and privacy: thus, it’s no surprise that, for the second half of the book, Mae doesn’t go kayaking at all.

Kayaking Quotes in The Circle

The The Circle quotes below all refer to the symbol of Kayaking. 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:
Social Networking and the Internet Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Vintage edition of The Circle published in 2014.
Book One, part 7 Quotes

She thought of the foxes that might be underneath her, the crabs that might be hiding under the stones on the shore, the people in the cars that might be passing overhead, the men and women in the tugs and tankers, arriving to port or leaving, sighing, everyone having seen everything. She guessed at it all, what might live, moving purposefully or drifting aimlessly, in the deep water around her, but she didn't think too much about any of it. It was enough to be aware of the million permutations possible around her, and take comfort in knowing she would not, and really could not, know much at all.

Related Characters: Mae Holland
Related Symbols: Kayaking
Page Number: 272
Explanation and Analysis:
Quotes explanation long mobile

Unlock explanations and citation info for this and every other The Circle quote.

Plus so much more...

Get LitCharts A+
Already a LitCharts A+ member? Sign in!
Get the entire The Circle LitChart as a printable PDF.
The circle.pdf.medium

Kayaking Symbol Timeline in The Circle

The timeline below shows where the symbol Kayaking appears in The Circle. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Book One, part 3
Privacy Theme Icon
...the beach. As she drives, she remembers Mercer (her old boyfriend) teaching her how to kayak. At the beach, she rents a kayak from a woman named Marion, whom Mae has... (full context)
Book One, part 5
Privacy Theme Icon
Furious with her mother, Mae drives out to her favorite kayaking spot and finds that Marion’s son, Walt, is running the kayaking station that afternoon. He... (full context)
Book One, part 6
Surveillance and Transparency Theme Icon
Privacy Theme Icon
Totalitarianism and Indoctrination Theme Icon
...or emotional support. Josiah asks Mae about her Sunday, and Mae explains that she went kayaking alone. Josiah, seeming personally offended, mutters, “I kayak.” Mae apologizes, half jokingly, for being “selfish.”... (full context)
Book One, part 7
Privacy Theme Icon
...the beach, even though it’s very late at night. To her surprise, she sees a kayak leaned against a fence. Mae assumes that someone has been late in returning a kayak... (full context)
Surveillance and Transparency Theme Icon
Privacy Theme Icon
Afterwards, Mae kayaks back to the beach and drops off her kayak. Suddenly, a voice yells, “Stay there.”... (full context)
Surveillance and Transparency Theme Icon
Privacy Theme Icon
Totalitarianism and Indoctrination Theme Icon
...immediately tells her, “this is very serious stuff.” He tells Mae that by stealing the kayak, she’s committed a crime. She should have known that Circle employees installed a SeeChange camera... (full context)
Book One, part 8
Surveillance and Transparency Theme Icon
Privacy Theme Icon
Totalitarianism and Indoctrination Theme Icon
...Mae finds it impossible to focus on anything. She feels guilty for having taken the kayak without telling anyone. Just before six pm, Eamon Bailey’s assistant leads Mae—who’s feeling intensely nervous—to... (full context)
Surveillance and Transparency Theme Icon
Privacy Theme Icon
Totalitarianism and Indoctrination Theme Icon
...cameras. Mae admits that if she’d known about the cameras, she wouldn’t have taken the kayak. Noticing that Mae is nervous, Bailey laughs merrily and assures her that she’s not being... (full context)
Surveillance and Transparency Theme Icon
Privacy Theme Icon
Totalitarianism and Indoctrination Theme Icon
Utopianism and Perfection Theme Icon
...Bailey have discussed already, Mae tells Bailey about how she felt guilty for stealing a kayak from a beach, and for refusing to “share” her experience with anyone via photos or... (full context)
Social Networking and the Internet Theme Icon
Surveillance and Transparency Theme Icon
Privacy Theme Icon
Totalitarianism and Indoctrination Theme Icon
Utopianism and Perfection Theme Icon
Bailey asks Mae about her kayaking. He wonders why Mae hasn’t posted any videos or pictures from her time spent kayaking.... (full context)
Book Two, part 3
Social Networking and the Internet Theme Icon
Surveillance and Transparency Theme Icon
Privacy Theme Icon
Totalitarianism and Indoctrination Theme Icon
Utopianism and Perfection Theme Icon
...for some reason, all she can think about is the elderly couple she met while kayaking. She thinks of how they spent their time drinking wine and “reminiscing about island fires.”... (full context)