The transformation of the protagonist in Places, in the Middle of Everything is catalyzed by the discovery of her husband’s affair. As she reflects on the past, the protagonist visualizes a distant memory as she talks about her unfaithful husband. She recalls sadly, “In front of me…is the café where one day you sat waiting for your lover…The Leblon Café, along with everything that followed and everything that went before, that finally made us go our separate ways” (Vigna 112). The protagonist transforms from a young lady joyfully blinded by love to a middle-aged woman who has weathered the tempests of a broken heart. She explains her transformation by relaying the story of her husband’s betrayal as she revisits the places where they used to spend time together. The protagonist further elaborates on the metaphor of the three empty chairs, signaling to the reader that she recognizes her past ignorance regarding her husband’s affair. By describing the scene where her husband secretly meets his lover as if she is the lover herself, the protagonist shows the reader that she understands the significance of another woman invading her love life. Throughout the short story, the protagonist condemns her former self to the point where she somewhat splits personalities. She is able to clearly see what cause...
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...fortune. Although these two characters suffered destruction because of their strong feelings of love, the results of their transformations were radically different due to the way they recovered.
The transformations of these characters are deeply influenced by their interactions and experiences with love. Both tragedies of love involved significant others as partners in marriage, emphasizing the impact close loved ones can have on other people. Love, an inexplicable feeling and emotion, is a driving force of change within all people. One must experience love first-hand in order to fully understand its impact and potential for transformation, positive or negative. Not all sorrowful experiences with love must result in a pain-filled or emotionally distraught future; an individual alone has the power to determine what kind of person will be reborn from such heartbreak.
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