Analysis Of To Room Nineteen By Doris Lessing

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There is a complex connection between marriage and physical health. Whether you are happily married or not, there will be a positive or negative effect of the marriage. Doris Lessing’s “To Room Nineteen” presents the idea of modern day marriage from a feminine perspective as not just "a failure in intelligence" (p. 251 Women in Fiction) but also a form of bondage from which one must escape at all costs. Marriage seems as the metric by which the dominant cultural beliefs measures their standards.
Doris Lessing, a creative writer, takes great care to establish the social, economic and intellectual prowess of Matthew and Susan Rawlings. She describes them as a sensible middle class couple "to whom others would come for advice" (p. 251/ Paragraph
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"Both Susan and Matthew had moments of thinking so, of looking in secret disbelief at this thing they had created: marriage, four children... (p. 253, Para. 3).
Their paths to self-discovery diverge as, according to Rula Quawas dissertation on the text, "in her internal quest for authentic selfhood,” she finds a gap between the dominant cultural ideology or her social role as woman and her own lived experience as a woman. She slips into de Lauretis' "chinks and cracks", into the other consciousness which she finally recognizes the culture would consider mad."
Meanwhile Matthew threatens what Susan has come to regard as the center around which the extraordinary structure that was their marriage revolved. His confession to the Myra Jennings affair widened the chinks as Susan spirals through her quest. There were lots of resentment in the marriage. Susan internalized everything which drove her insane. Matthew's contribution to her deepening psychosis was when he confessed to having an affair. Matthew was like the society he represents, failed to see beyond the very frills, even though he realizes his marriage was lacking, his quest for self-discovery led to extramarital affairs. This extramarital affair served as a
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She didn’t want to tell her hurt her family so she coped with her condition. The inability to connect the hidden feeling led her to isolation. She yawns for her freedom, as Doris Lessing stated in “To room nineteen”, “she possessed with resentment that seven hours of freedom in every day were not free” (P. 263/Par. 4).

Duncan-Richards 5
Susan struggled to get out of the culturally defined norms in the society. She wanted her marriage to be different but instead it wasn’t. Her traditional marriage drove her insane. Her marriage was lack of communication which caused her to distance herself from her family secretly. She escaped to room nineteen as Ozsert , S (2004) “A Passage to Freedom” stated by Khun Zhao (2012) the room is “a shelter from housework, children and unfaithful husband.
In conclusion, one can lose their self in a marriage, more so the woman. Sometimes you get involved with a person and end up marrying to them, then the relationship changed. The story showed an independent woman who give up everything for her family and had no time for herself. It pushed her to committing suicide which was the only way she could've freed herself. The lack of communication in a marriage can cause each partner to resent each other which was the case in the story of “To room
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