The Memory Police


Yoko Ogawa

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The Young Couple Character Analysis

The young couple are the narrator's quiet neighbors. Other people in the neighborhood think they are aloof. However, after the Memory Police raid their home and arrest them, along with the teenage boy they were hiding, the narrator learns that the couple are part of an underground network of people who hide those who don't forget when they're supposed to. When the narrator learns this, she thinks that she must have misjudged them. She later cares for their abandoned dog, Don.

The Young Couple Quotes in The Memory Police

The The Memory Police quotes below are all either spoken by The Young Couple or refer to The Young Couple. 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:
Memory and Connection  Theme Icon
Chapter 17  Quotes

Just then, three shadows emerged from the house to the east of mine. It was too dark to distinguish their features, but they walked wearily through the snow, backs bent, the Memory Police pushing them from behind, the light glinting cruelly off their guns.

Snatches of my neighbors’ voices could be heard in the dark.

“I had no idea they were hiding people in there,” said the former hatmaker. “Who would have thought it?”

“Seems as though both the husband and wife were in a secret group that help folks like that.”

“I guess that’s why they didn’t get to know anyone in the neighborhood.”

“Look at him. He’s just a child.”

Page Number: 155
Explanation and Analysis:
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The Young Couple Character Timeline in The Memory Police

The timeline below shows where the character The Young Couple appears in The Memory Police. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 15 
Memory and Connection  Theme Icon
Loss, Isolation, and Identity Theme Icon
...street commiserate about finding food. A woman with bad knees mentions how other neighbors, a young couple with no children, had recently been rude to her and seem not to want to... (full context)
Chapter 17 
Loss, Isolation, and Identity Theme Icon
Authoritarianism and Surveillance Theme Icon
...of her other neighbors talking: the ex-hatmaker says that he had no idea that the young couple had been hiding people in their house. The two were part of an underground group.... (full context)
Chapter 19 
Loss, Isolation, and Identity Theme Icon
Authoritarianism and Surveillance Theme Icon
Also in this time, the narrator starts caring for the young couple ’s dog, Don. The old man helps the narrator move his doghouse into her backyard.... (full context)