The Wasp Factory


Iain Banks

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Mrs. Clamp Character Analysis

A local woman and family friend comes to the island every week to deliver supplies to Angus and Frank. She cares about the wellbeing of the family, but is not privy to any details about their private lives. Still, she is friendly enough with Angus and Frank to occasionally stay for lunch, and she was present many years earlier during Paul’s birth and Frank’s simultaneous castration.

Mrs. Clamp Quotes in The Wasp Factory

The The Wasp Factory quotes below are all either spoken by Mrs. Clamp or refer to Mrs. Clamp. 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:
Ritual and Superstition  Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Simon & Schuster edition of The Wasp Factory published in 1998.
Chapter 3 Quotes

My greatest enemies are Women and the Sea. These things I hate. Women because they are weak and stupid and live in the shadow of men and are nothing compared to them, and the Sea because it has always frustrated me, destroying what I have built, washing away what I have left, wiping clean the marks I have made. And I’m not at all sure the Wind is blameless, either.

The Sea is a sort of mythological enemy, and I make what you might call sacrifices to it in my soul, fearing it a little, respecting it as you’re supposed to, but in many ways treating it as an equal. It does things to the world, and so do I; we should both be feared. Women…well, women are a bit too close for comfort as far as I’m concerned. I don’t even like having them on the island, not even Mrs Clamp, who comes every week on a Saturday to clean the house and deliver our supplies. She’s ancient, and sexless the way the very old and the very young are, but she’ll still been a woman, and I resent that, for my own good reason.

Page Number: 43
Explanation and Analysis:
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Mrs. Clamp Character Timeline in The Wasp Factory

The timeline below shows where the character Mrs. Clamp appears in The Wasp Factory. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 6: The Skull Grounds
Family and Friendship  Theme Icon
Sexism and Gender Roles Theme Icon
...terrorizing Old Saul, and one afternoon, as Agnes went into labor, attended by Angus and Mrs Clamp , the pair heard barks and a scream from outside. Angus rushed downstairs to find... (full context)
Chapter 11: The Prodigal
Ritual and Superstition  Theme Icon
Sanity and Insanity  Theme Icon
...engages in some target practice, shooting ball bearings and throwing his knife at a tree.  Mrs. Clamp visits for lunch. She reports that a dog is missing in town. Frank jokes it’s... (full context)