Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? | Study Guide

Philip K. Dick

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Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? | Chapter 20 | Summary



After he gets off the phone with Harry Bryant, Rick Deckard suggests that John Isidore move to another apartment, because the police will be working in this one. Isidore says he is leaving the building. Deckard suggests living in his building, but Isidore refuses. Isidore then leaves the apartment, confused, and Deckard goes home.

When Deckard gets home, his wife tells him their goat is dead. Someone forced it off the roof. From the description, Deckard realizes it is Rachael Rosen. Iran Deckard wants him to come inside so they can talk about the news that Wilbur Mercer is a fake. Instead, Deckard leaves again, flying off into the uninhabited north.


Earlier, Rachael Rosen had accused Rick Deckard of loving the goat more than anything, including his wife. She carries out a very human act of revenge. He killed her friends, so she kills his goat.

This chapter develops the theme of isolation. John Isidore had thought that once he made connections with others, he couldn't go back to living alone. Now, though, that connection is twice shattered: first by the androids torturing the spider and then by Deckard killing them. Isidore is shattered in turn, and essentially drifts out of the book. Deckard has always been the more active of the two, but he also moves beyond the bounds of what he has known before: he travels to a desolate area where nothing lives, and nothing can live. Animals only go there if they know they are going to die, so Deckard is, in a way, following his beloved goat into death. Experiencing connection and then losing it shatters Deckard the way it had Isidore.

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