Places in The Works of Madeleine L'Engle - Time Quartet - Other Planets

Other Planets

When Meg, Calvin and Charles Wallace travel to other planets, the ones whose names are given include the following:

  • Camazotz – A planet of extreme, enforced conformity, ruled by a disembodied brain called IT. Meg's father, Dr. Alex Murry, is imprisoned there for a time, inside a building called "CENTRAL Central Intelligence". Camazotz is described as being similar to Earth, with familiar birch, pines, and maple trees, an ordinary hill on which the children arrive, and a town with smokestacks, which "might have been one of any number of familiar towns". Its ordinary appearance becomes less so as the children see that everything is endlessly duplicated without variation (except for one noncomforming boy, who is later punished). Thus, the houses are "all exactly alike, small square boxes painted gray"; this characterization has been compared with "the burgeoning American suburbia" such as the post-war housing developments of Levittown, Pennsylvania. The people who live in the houses are similarly described, with "mother figures" who "all gave the appearance of being the same". Camazotz has also been compared with "an early sixties American image of life in a Communist state", a characterization partially dismissed as too glib. The world is said to have a psychological significance for the character Meg, in that the pressure to conform there is similar to the pressures she faces in the small town where she lives. The name Camazotz refers to a Mayan bat god.
  • Ixchel – A planet of muted colors, inhabited by tall, motherly, sightless creatures with tentacles. Named by the author for Ixchel, a Mayan moon goddess, it orbits the same sun as Camazotz.
  • Uriel – A planet with extremely tall mountains, an allusion to the Archangel Uriel. It is inhabited by creatures that resemble winged centaurs, and identified as the third planet of the Starmark in the spiral nebula Messier 101. The site of Mrs Whatsit's temporary transformation into one of these winged creatures, it is the place where "the guardian angels" "show the questers a vision of the universe that is obscured on earth."

They also stop briefly on an unnamed two-dimensional planet and on an unnamed planet in Orion's belt, the latter of which is the home of the Happy Medium.

Read more about this topic:  Places In The Works Of Madeleine L'Engle, Time Quartet

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