We

by

Yevgeny Zamyatin

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O-90 Character Analysis

O-90 is a female cipher assigned to D-503 as a sexual partner. Despite the One State’s prohibition of romantic attachments, O-90 is D-503’s regular companion, and she feels real affection toward him, becoming jealous once it’s clear that D-503 has developed feelings for I-330. O-90 is I-330’s foil, as she is neither outwardly threatening nor rebellious. Whereas D-503 describes I-330 using sharp, angular imagery, he emphasizes O-90’s round, soft, and childlike characteristics, and her clear blue eyes. Still, despite her soft, unintimidating personality, O-90 is not entirely devoid of rebelliousness: from the start of We, she is consumed by a repressed desire to have and raise her own child, something the State has explicitly prohibited her from doing. Ultimately, her desire to procreate is too strong to repress, and she propositions D-503 to impregnate her. He does so, and, with the help of I-330, she and her unborn child escape to the free world beyond the Green Wall.

O-90 Quotes in We

The We quotes below are all either spoken by O-90 or refer to O-90. 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:
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Modern Library edition of We published in 2006.
Record 2 Quotes

And I don’t know—perhaps it was somewhere in her eyes or eyebrows—there was a kind of strange and irritating X to her, and I couldn’t pin it down, couldn’t give it a numerical expression

Related Characters: D-503 (speaker), I-330, O-90
Related Symbols: The Variable X
Page Number: 8
Explanation and Analysis:
Record 8 Quotes

“Oh come on—knowledge! This knowledge of yours is utter cowardice. Yes, that’s it—really. You just want to build a little wall around infinity—and you’re afraid to look behind it! Peek over it and you’ll have to squeeze your eyes shut—ha!”

Related Characters: R-13 (speaker), D-503, I-330, O-90
Page Number: 37
Explanation and Analysis:
Record 32 Quotes

A ridiculous feeling but I was sure of it: yes, I must help. Ridiculous, because it was a duty and yet another crime. Ridiculous, because a white duty cannot, at the same time, be a black duty and a crime—they can’t coincide. Life is either blackless or whiteless and its color only depends on a basic, logical premise. And if the premise is that I gave her a child illegally…

Related Characters: D-503 (speaker), O-90
Page Number: 167
Explanation and Analysis:
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O-90 Character Timeline in We

The timeline below shows where the character O-90 appears in We. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Record 2
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
D-503’s musing are interrupted by the click of an intercom, which alerts him to O-90’s imminent arrival: the two of them have a walk scheduled together that afternoon. D-503 regards... (full context)
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Alienation Theme Icon
Fear of the Unknown  Theme Icon
D-503 notes how sharp and angular I-330 is compared to O-90. He sees that she has sharp, white teeth. He also notes a male cipher walking... (full context)
Alienation Theme Icon
Fear of the Unknown  Theme Icon
...he’ll be given instructions to do so, but she confidently asserts that he will. Before O-90 leaves, she tells D-503 she wishes he could come over and “lower the blinds,” even... (full context)
Record 4
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Fear of the Unknown  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
...its mechanical predictability. After this second performance, the ciphers exist the auditorium. D-503 remembers that O-90 is scheduled to come over in an hour, as it is their Sex Day, and... (full context)
Record 7
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
...Bureau of Guardians. He resigns to do so after 16:00. At 16:10 he runs into O-90, which he sees as fortunate, for she will encourage him in his pursuit. O-90 suggests... (full context)
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
D-503’s outburst hurts O-90, and she asks him if he’s sick. Internally, he recalls images of the Ancient House,... (full context)
Record 8
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Fear of the Unknown  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
...in themselves and their loved ones for illegal activity. There, he runs into R-13 and O-90. R-13 accuses D-503 of daydreaming, jokingly telling him that he should have been a poet.... (full context)
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Fear of the Unknown  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
D-503 invites R-13 over to work on math problems, but O-90 hesitates because she and R-13 have a scheduled Sex Day. D-503 is upset because he... (full context)
Record 11
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
...his friend’s clarity and rationality. R-13 senses this and embraces D-503. R-13 tells D-503 that O-90 has a pink ticket for D-503, and that D-503 is clearly something special to O-90—not... (full context)
Record 12
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
...the subterranean rail, he thinks about how excited he is about his Sex Day with O-90, as it will restore order to his life. D-503 thinks about R-13’s new poems and... (full context)
Record 13
Fear of the Unknown  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
D-503 wakes up feeling good: O-90 will be over tonight. When he gets up to go to work it’s foggy outside... (full context)
Record 14
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Alienation Theme Icon
Fear of the Unknown  Theme Icon
...next day, D-503 writes about what happened after he returned from his incident with I-330: O-90 comes over, as planned, and senses something is wrong with him. He tells her he’s... (full context)
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Alienation Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
O-90 asks where D-503 was earlier. He can’t tell her the truth, so he starts to... (full context)
Record 18
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Alienation Theme Icon
...a letter. D-503 is excited because he thinks it’s from I-330, but it’s actually from O-90. (full context)
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Alienation Theme Icon
Fear of the Unknown  Theme Icon
In her letter, O-90 writes that D-503 is particularly special to her: that she loves him and cannot live... (full context)
Record 19
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
When D-503 arrives home, O-90 is waiting for him. She asks him if he received her letter. He tells her... (full context)
Record 20
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
D-503 reflects on his prohibited intimate act with O-90. He pictures O-90 being punished for getting pregnant against the One State’s orders and wonders... (full context)
Record 25
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
D-503 sees O-90 on a projection screen, here hands placed protectively across her stomach. Suddenly, D-503 sees R-13... (full context)
Record 29
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
...Ancient House, as I-330 told him she wanted to meet in the apartment. He spots O-90 behind him. O-90 is especially round today: she is visibly pregnant. O-90 tells D-503 how... (full context)
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
D-503 comes up with a plan to save O-90 and her baby—with the help of I-330. O-90 refuses to accept the help of “that... (full context)
Record 32
Individuality vs. Collectivism  Theme Icon
Repression of Desire  Theme Icon
D-503 runs into O-90, who is also hiding from the machine-like ciphers. O-90 is so terrified about the safety... (full context)