Explore how Mansfield portrays the role of women in "Prelude"? Essay

Explore how Mansfield portrays the role of women in "Prelude"? Essay

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In the short story Prelude Mansfield deals with the question of identity. In this particular extract Beryl’s role is explored by means of a self remonstration. She feels despicable for the presence of the role her highly visible false-self plays and fancies to live differently but soon her sudden “bounce back” conveys the fact that women are too powerless to make any changes in their life.

The narrative position in this extract is third person omniscient, in fact Mansfield dose not introduce characters much through narration, we learn about them from direct observation. Therefore this extract is particularly important as it is an exploration of Beryl’s secret self. Beryl realizes she plays multi-roles in her personalized fantasy world. Her name itself is a perfect metaphoric evidence of this, as gem-stone beryl allows its color to be determined by external stimuli, we can assume that beryl plays different roles in her life according to external environment and atmosphere. “I’m always acting a part. I’m never my real self for a moment.” Beryl remonstrates herself that her life is i...

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