Alston Badger

Observation: Lilith is becoming more and more of an outsider among her people


Hypothesis: By becoming an outsider, Lilith will become the true mediator between humans and aliens, which is exactly what the Oankali want. Since she will neither fit under the category of human or Oankali, she will be able to make impartial judgments that can benefit both groups because only she understands the needs of both groups.

Example 1 – Was she the only one who would miss them? P.213 This is quote refers to Lilith’s inner thought that only she will miss the Oankali


Example 2 – …but you’re the different one. Nobody knows how different. P.214

Gabe voices what all the other humans are thinking – that Lilith is not one of them


Example 3 – She must get nonhumans to help her against her own people in a place that might or might not be on Earth. P.222


Example 4 – Lilith found herself standing with aliens, facing hostile, dangerous humans. P.227


Example 5 – A fear of being abandoned alone, left as much an outcast as Lilith? P. 227 This refers to Lilith’s inner thought that perhaps Leah sided with the humans because she didn’t want to be alone.


Reflection: Looking at my examples have given my several possible readings of the text. Lilith serves as an example of the notion that only those fully exposed to other cultures can understand than – in essence, Butler is stating that unless one has been engrossed in another culture, one cannot judge it, one cannot truly grasp. Also, Lilith’s confusion could be seen as an allegory for mixed race people. Which race does such an individual identify with? Perhaps Lilith shows that a mixed race individual can identify with both races.