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Analysis Of The Bridges Of Madison County And Astronomer's Wife

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Marriage consists of love between two people, the strong connection between them, and memories made that the couple will never forget. Despite all of this, it is possible for one person in the marriage — in this case the wife — to begin to lose this feeling. The women feel as if they are held back; tied down to a life they no longer desire. As the women contemplate, they become scared to leave the comfortable life they originally had, for a new life they only previously could dream of. The two wives in The Bridges of Madison County, directed by Clint Eastwood, and “Astronomer’s Wife,” written by Kay Boyle, are continuing to live in a marriage they no longer want. When both women are deserted emotionally and physically by their husbands, the…show more content…
Ames are stuck in a marriage that is on repeat, day after day. The pair of wives are not living their best lives or to the fullest potential. The husbands of Mrs. Ames and Francesca do in fact offer the woman comfortable lives, but do not display any affection or let the woman experience what a real marriage should look like. In the film, Francesca goes day by day tending to her family and their every need. She makes breakfast, washes the dishes and clothes, and tends the garden. As the state fair approaches, Francesca has the opportunity to attend this event with her family as her daughter, Carolyn, has a cow entered in the fair competitions. Already lonely, the wife tending to her non-affectionate, seemingly lifeless husband, would rather stay home by herself than go about spending her days with a husband who gives her little to nothing that she truly craves. In the short story, the wife seems to be the only person up and about in the home of her husband, the astronomer. She tends to his every need until he finally decides to start his day. His obsession with astronomy keeps their marriage distant, and he is much more focused on the astronomy than he is with her. When presented the challenge of fixing a plumbing issue, the plumber takes on the bigger task of finding a fix for a broken marriage. On finding a fix for the plumbing, the plumber requests the man of the house to offer up some help. Embarrassed, the wife states, “He's still--still in bed,…show more content…
Both Francesca and Mrs. Ames are amazed, yet shocked at what they have been missing out on. Francesca expresses this feeling in saying, “I was acting like another woman, yet I was more myself than ever before,” (Eastwood). The two women lust after the affection and sense of caring that both Robert and the plumber offer. As Mrs. Ames goes about her day, the only responsibility her husband has is resting until he is ready to rise. Having no prestige or authority as the man of his own home, the astronomer would rather remain in a state of slumber than be the man of his own house. Robert reveals what he sees in Francesca by stating, “Don't kid yourself, Francesca: you are anything but a simple woman,” (Eastwood). Even though both husbands offer Francesca and Mrs. Ames close to nothing they covet, the two women still go about their day working to please their husbands and maintain the incomplete marriage they have. No affection is evident and the two wives rely on unplanned encounters to display happiness in front of their