Emily St. John Mandel Station 11 Summary

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In “Station Eleven”, Emily St. John-Mandel writes about a world that has been hit with a deadly disease which wipes out a majority of the human population, leaving the world in shambles. What is left of the human population is struggling to survive because of the limited resources and the violence that occurs due to the lack of governmental control which makes conditions more difficult. Eventually, people will start to question the purpose of living and what it is they are living for. They will ask themselves, “What makes us human?” Emily St. John-Mandel uses the Traveling Symphony to show us that the relationships we have with others are what makes us human.
The Traveling Symphony is a group of actors, actresses, and musicians that travel and perform for the towns they come across. The Symphony has long realized that just surviving will not cut it. Their lead caravan carries the text: Because survival is insufficient. The group has a good cause, but it is not all fun and games. “The Symphony was insufferable, hell was other flutes or other people or whoever had used the last of the rosin or whoever missed the most rehearsals, but the truth was that the
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Emily St. John-Mandel uses the Traveling Symphony in order to show that relationships are what gives us a reason to live, it is what makes us human. In both stories, we see that just getting by is not enough, people want a purpose. With “Station Eleven”, the relationships they have within the Symphony is what pushes them through as well as their relationship with their audience because without their audience, the Traveling Symphony simply would not exist. There would be no purpose for the actors, actresses, and musicians of the Traveling Symphony. In “Romeo and Juliet”, the relationship between Romeo and Juliet is so strong that without each other, they lose the purpose in their life and would rather die than live without each