Helen Gardner

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Helen Gardner

In act one scene one we discover that Helen is a very down to earth

type of person as she says “when I find somewhere for us to live I

have to consider something far more important than your feelings. . .

.The rent”, this shows that she is thinking about the more important

things in life, she is also emphasising the letter “I” which is

implying that she is a lot better than her daughter, this also shows

that she has a roof over Jo’s head.

The beginning of this play shows that Helen enjoys drink, “pass me a

glass Jo” the first thing that she thinks about is alcohol, this shows

that if she can afford to buy whisky then she may have been able to

find a better place for them to live, although the accommodation isn’t

very appropriate it still provides Jo with a roof over her head, we

also get the impression that she is an unfit parent as her priorities

should be towards her daughter and not towards alcohol.

Helen feels that Jo owes her a lot, Jo feels the total opposite, and

there is not a close relationship, Helen feels that she deserves

respect from Jo, most people may think that as Helen is Jo’s mother

then Jo does owe her a lot but most people would think that Helen owes

a lot to Jo as she hasn’t really been there for her daughter all these

years, but as an adult Helen does deserve respect from her daughter no

matter what she has done, because at the end of the day Helen did

bring Jo into the world and has brought her up to be what she is now.

As we can see in act one Jo shares a bed with Helen this is a

redeeming quality because if Helen despised Jo that much she wouldn’t

be willing to do this, because at the end of the day the both need

somewhere to sleep.

Helen has a very negative view on life as she says, “that’s where we

all end up sooner or later”, this was related to Jo trying to decide

where to put her bulbs, she felt that the best place to put them was

in a cold dark place, the cold dark place meaning to Helen a grave,

this is yet another reference of death which Helen seems to use.

I think that by being a prostitute and sleeping around is a way for

Helen to find someone to love her, she craves it.

Helen seems to be addicted to men, She gives Jo a distorted view on
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