Munro uses a fox farm for the setting of Boys and Girls to bring out many of the social issues between genders. While her father worked outside doing all the labor work, her mother stayed inside cooking and cleaning, “it was an odd thing to see my mother down at the barn” (Munro 12). The girl was very resentful towards her mother, mostly because she did not agree with the stereotypical life that her mother led. Causing the girl to spend more time helping her father around the farm. The girl would help feed the foxes, “cut the long grass, and the lamb’s quarter and flowering money-musk” (Munro 10). Although when she turned eleven, things started to change causing the girl to not only observe gender differences between her mother and father but to experience it between her and her brother Laird when working around the farm. While Laird became more predominant with helping on the farm, the girl became less valuable to her father and was forced to help her mother around the house.
In The Chrysanthemums the story also takes place in a farm-like setting in the 19...
... middle of paper ...
...hich was the symbol of her prettiness” (Steinbeck 94). Although when Elisa and Henry are on their way to go to the town, Elisa sees the chrysanthemums that the tinkerer had thrown out. At this moment, Elisa suddenly realizes that she will never be anything more than what she was before, a woman that is worthless to society.
While there is a considerable age difference between the girl in Boys and Girls and Elisa in The Chrysanthemums, they both go through similar experiences of being held back from their hopes and dreams because of the gender. Rather than doing what they want, they do what is expected of them. Munro and Steinbeck do a good job of conveying this message by using setting, symbolism and character development as key elements. Leaving the girl and Elisa with a future of unhappiness and disappointment and hopes “cut […] up in fifty pieces” (Munro 53)
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Society tries to place many rules upon an individual as to what is acceptable and what is not . One must decide for themselves whether to give in to these pressures and conform to society’s projected image, or rather to resist and maintain their own desired self image. In the story “Boys and Girls” by Alice Munro, Munro suggests that this conflict is internal and external and a persons experiences in life will determine which of these forces will conquer. In terms of the unnamed protagonist’s experiences in the story, it becomes clear just how strong the pressure of society to conform really is, as it overcomes and replaces the girl’s self image.... [tags: Boys and Girls, Alice Munro]
829 words (2.4 pages)
- The Progress of Love by Alice Munro Plot: Woman gets call at work from her father, telling her that her mother is dead. Father never got used to living alone and went into retirement home. Mother is described as very religious, Anglican, who had been saved at the age of 14. Father was also religious and had waited for the mother since he first met her.... [tags: Munro Alice Progress Love]
1590 words (4.5 pages)
- "Red Dress" by Alice Munro The short story "Red Dress" by Alice Munro is about a young girl's first high school dance. Her home and school environment determined her attitude towards the dance.This girl's home life was bad. She was constantly put down mentally by her mother, even in front of her friend Lonnie, to the point that the narrator envied Lonnie on account that her mother died and she lived alone with her father. "'I doubt if she appreciates it.' She enraged me, talking like this to Lonnie, as if Lonnie were grown up and I were still a child." Her mother was obscene in the house; the description that is given would make one sick.... [tags: Red Dress Alice Munro]
414 words (1.2 pages)
- Alice Munro's Boys and Girls In Alice Munro’s “Boys and Girls” she tells a story about a young girl’s resistance to womanhood in a society infested with gender roles and stereotypes. The story takes place in the 1940s on a fox farm outside of Jubilee, Ontario, Canada. During this time, women were viewed as second class citizens, but the narrator was not going to accept this position without a fight. Munro’s invention of an unnamed character symbolized the narrator’s lack of identity, compared to her younger brother, who was given the name Laird, which is a synonym for “Lord”.... [tags: Boys and Girls Alice Munro]
1063 words (3 pages)
- Alice Munro's "Boys and Girls" Alice Munro's short story, "Boys and Girls," has a very interesting detail written into it. The narrator's brother is named Laird, which was carefully chosen by the author. Laird is a synonym for lord, which plays a important role in a story where a young girl has society's unwritten rules forced upon her. At the time of the story, society did not consider men and women equal. The name symbolized how the male child was superior in the parents' eyes and in general.... [tags: Boys and Girls, Alice Munro]
1047 words (3 pages)
- “Boys and Girls” is a short story, by Alice Munro, which illustrates a tremendous growing period into womanhood, for a young girl living on a fox farm in Canada, post World War II. The young girl slowly comes to discover her ability to control her destiny and her influences on the world. The events that took place over the course of the story helped in many ways to shape her future. From these events one can map the Protagonist’s future. The events that were drawn within the story provided the Protagonist with a foundation to become an admirable woman.... [tags: Boys and Girls, Alice Munro]
1200 words (3.4 pages)
- Symbolism in The Chrysanthemums by John Steinbeck At first glance John Steinbeck's "The Chrysanthemums' seems to be a story of a woman whose niche is in the garden. Upon deeper inspection, the story reveals strong symbolisms of children, vulnerability, and connection--being the most important, of the main character. Elisa Allen is the main character who is at her strongest and most proud in the garden and weakened when she becomes vulnerable and loses her connection to the outer world. Elisa shows a new aura of confidence when she makes this connection to a peddler, who also is the cause of her realization of reality and her crying.... [tags: Papers Chrysanthemums Steinbeck Essays]
706 words (2 pages)
- John Steinbeck's The Chrysanthemums The Chrysanthemums is a story that takes place in the Salinas Valley of California. The story's main character is Elisa Allen. Elisa is thirty-five years old. She is a character that goes through development and many changes in the story. Throughout the story Elisa Allen goes through both physical and mental changes." In the beginning of the story Elisa is strong and eager"). She is working in her garden. Her husband Henry comes over to see her and asks her if she would like to go to town for dinner and a movie.... [tags: John Steinbeck The Chrysanthemums]
1083 words (3.1 pages)
- John Steinbeck's The Chrysanthemums The short story “The Chrysanthemums,” by John Steinbeck, is a multi-layered work that contains various symbolic meanings, it is said to be “…one of the best things he ever did” (Parini 146). It has been hailed as a great short story not for the depiction of a cattleman and his wife, but for it’s symbolic meanings. Steinbeck was known for writing about his “…strong rebellion against any repressive power in civilization’s power bloc and his strong sensitivity toward any repressed individual” (Timmerman 177).... [tags: John Steinbeck Chrysanthemums Papers]
1919 words (5.5 pages)
- John Steinbeck's “The Chrysanthemums” John Steinbeck's "The Chrysanthemums" shows the true feelings of the main character, Elisa Allen, through the use of setting and her interactions with other characters in the story. By way of vivid descriptions, Elisa's feelings of dissatisfaction over the lack of excitement in her life are portrayed. Her role as a mere housewife and then the subsequent change to feelings of a self-assured woman are clearly seen. These inner feelings are most apparent with the portrayal of Elisa working in the garden with the chrysanthemums, the conversation she has with the man passing through, and finally, when she and her husband are going out to dinner.... [tags: Steinbeck Chrysanthemums Essays]
1277 words (3.6 pages)