How to understand this quote from the book "call me by your name"

To be who I am because of you. To be who he was because of me.

I can't figure out the syntactical parts of this sentence, either can't I know the real meaning of this sentence.

(I don't even think it is conventional English, right?)

  • 1
    What's "call me by your name"? That's not enough context.
    – Eddie Kal
    Commented Jan 23, 2021 at 1:54

1 Answer 1


They are sentence fragments. They are grammatically incomplete.

They also are not meant to be read rationally. They are intended to reflect the emotional turmoil of falling in love. To be read as intended, they must be read as essentially appositive phrases in the preceding sentence. Trying to make sense of what I see as over-written balderdash, it seems to be trying to say

when two beings [presumably human] need [the author means “yearn”] to become one emotionally fused being [that’s not what “ductile” means, but he is on a roll], so that he is me and I am him.

It is decipherable despite the sentence fragments and misused vocabulary, bur deciphering it is complicated by the fact that it does not make much sense. Of course, the narrator is busy having sex with a peach while writing so sense is something he may have scant access to.

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