The Change of Miss Brill in Miss Brill by Katherine Mansfield

The Change of Miss Brill in Miss Brill by Katherine Mansfield

Length: 475 words (1.4 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓
Katherine Mansfield's "Miss Brill" is a deep illustration of delusional thinking when one is deprived of emotional human bonds. This short story paints a picture of an elderly woman, Miss Brill, who believes life is a walk in the park, until a couple leads her to believe life is not all fantasy. Although this tale develops gradually, Miss Brill undergoes a drastic transformation at the tale?s end. The change that Miss Brill is forced to undergo is understandable through symbolism, characterization, and theme.
Miss Brill?s fur is her most prized possession as she refers to it once as ?Dear little thing!? (182). She is excited to be taking the fur out of its box, but is heartbroken when a young woman refers to it as ?a fried whiting? (186). It is this moment when the drastic transformation of Miss Brill is evident. Miss Brill then leaves the park, skips the usual bakery stop, and goes home to her ?room like a cupboard? (186). She takes off the fur, puts it back in the box, and the last line says ?But when she put the lid on she thought she heard something crying? (186). At this point it is now evident through symbolism, Miss Brill herself is crying. It is now Miss Brill finally sees reality.

The developing character of Miss Brill is first portrayed as an elderly woman, happy and content with life, however in denial about her lack of human contact. On her Sundays in the park she enjoys watching people, and taking part in what she calls a play, because ?even she had a part? (185). She also gets much satisfaction from listening to
the conversations of others, listening to the band, and is especially happy this Sunday because it is the beginning of the season. Since Miss Brill believes her life is wonderful, it takes a harsh insult from a stranger to bring about the transformation. It is then when the character of Miss Brill develops into a woman realizing she is all alone.

The theme of ?Miss Brill? sums up the change that the protagonist undergoes. Creating a fantasy life can protect a person from loneliness, however the effects of reality are heart breaking. Miss Brill believes she is important, until the fateful day at the park.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"The Change of Miss Brill in Miss Brill by Katherine Mansfield." 123HelpMe.com. 17 Sep 2019
    <https://www.123helpme.com/view.asp?id=15424>.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Katherine Mansfield's Miss Brill Essay

- “The method a writer takes to bring a character to life” is defined as characterization. "Miss Brill" by Katherine Mansfield displays the character of Miss Brill as the protagonist, confronted with the reality of her existence. In the short story "Miss Brill," by Katherine Mansfield, an elderly woman spends a Sunday afternoon visiting a seaside park as part of her weekly ritual. As a developing character, Miss Brill is forced to face a harsh reality from her routine events. In the short story, "Miss Brill," Katherine Mansfield effectively uses various literary techniques to characterize Miss Brill's complex and interesting character....   [tags: Miss Brill Essays]

Research Papers
1118 words (3.2 pages)

Essay on The Imagination of Miss Brill in Katherine Mansfield's Miss Brill

-     In his introduction to the story, Miss Brill by Katherine Mansfield, Michael Meyer says, "Mansfield tends to focus on intelligent, sensitive protagonists who undergo subtle but important changes in their lives" (226).  Two key questions in Miss Brill are what kind of intelligence and sensitivity does she posses, and what is the true nature of the change that she undergoes as a result of the young man's cruel remark about her, "But why not. Because of that stupid old thing at the end there....   [tags: Miss Brill Essays]

Research Papers
1050 words (3 pages)

Essay about The Characterization of Miss Brill in Miss Brill by Katherine Mansfield

- In the Bedford Introduction to Literature, Characterization is defined as "... the process by which a writer makes that character seem real to the reader"(2126). In order to do this a writer has multiple tools at their disposal that add to the depth of a character and simplify roles in a story. This includes the use of Protagonists and Antagonists, static and dynamic characters, showing and telling, and motivated and plausible action, as well as many others. The short story "Miss Brill" by Katherine Mansfield is no exception to this and displays the main character of Miss Brill as the protagonist, who is confronted with the reality of her existence....   [tags: Miss Brill Essays]

Research Papers
836 words (2.4 pages)

Katherine Mansfield's Miss Brill Essay examples

- There will be many obstacles in life that are too hard for the average human to deal with, but it is how well the obstacles are dealt with that will make a difference. If the obstacles are handled properly, it could have positive effects; however, if they are handled poorly, it could diminish happiness. Katherine Mansfield's short story, "Miss Brill," uses symbol, plot, character, and point of view, to reveal the theme that creating an alternate reality through the lives of other people will not relieve loneliness....   [tags: Miss Brill Essays]

Research Papers
1509 words (4.3 pages)

Katherine Mansfield's Miss Brill Essay

- In many countries, taking care of the elderly is one of the top priorities. Some feel that our nation neglects the elderly. The older generation is often left to live in nursing homes or remain in their own homes with no loved ones around. This has the potential to make a person feel that he would like to shut out all of reality. The short story "Miss Brill", by Katherine Mansfield, is about an older woman who doesn't have any people around her that love her. Because of this isolation she makes things up in her mind to compensate....   [tags: Miss Brill Essays]

Research Papers
962 words (2.7 pages)

The Theme of Katherine Mansfield's Miss Brill Essay

- In the story "Miss Brill," an old, lonely lady spends her Sunday observing people in a park. Although ignored by everyone around her, Miss Brill manages to convince herself that she is really an integral part of the scene and would be missed if she weren't there. Her illusion is shattered by a chance remark at the end of the story, and she returns home, clearly devastated by her new understanding of her place in life. What this story is trying to illustrate is that sometimes people can be happy through living in an illusion....   [tags: Miss Brill Essays]

Research Papers
1219 words (3.5 pages)

Self Realization in Katherine Mansfield's Miss Brill Essay

- In the short story entitled "Miss Brill," written by Katherine Mansfield, the reader spends a routine Sunday with Miss Brill, whose character is revealed through her thoughts about others as she observes a crowd of strangers and soaks up the atmosphere while sitting at a bench in the park. Miss Brill seems to enjoy her routine of sitting in the park and listening to the band play, but most of all she savors the ability to eavesdrop into other people's lives by listening "as though she didn't listen" (Mansfield 259) to their conversations and observing their every move....   [tags: Miss Brill Essays]

Research Papers
638 words (1.8 pages)

Essay on Analysis Of Katherine Mansfield 's ' Miss Brill '

- Katherine Mansfield has truly shown the suffering pain that Miss Brill has experienced over time, but Miss Brill seems to not have correct mind set. Mansfield describes Miss Brill as a lonely, isolated, English school teacher that wears a fur necklet. She describes the setting in France and while Miss Brill visits different places. When you examine the era, you will know the story in set in the 1920’s. During this time, many different events occurred and it also affected the different countries at the time....   [tags: Short story, Fiction, Katherine Mansfield, Hair]

Research Papers
984 words (2.8 pages)

Miss Brill by Katherine Mansfield and Story of an Hour by Kate Chopin Essay

- Bliss and Miss Brill by Katherine Mansfield and Story of an Hour by Kate Chopin On studying the texts Bliss and Miss Brill by Katherine Mansfield and Story of an Hour by Kate Chopin I have associated all the stories with a sense of female repression. All the short stories feature a main female character and this character is being repressed in various ways such as by another character or their lives in general. In all the stories the awareness of repression appears towards the end mainly due to an event that has taken place....   [tags: Story of an Hour, Miss Brill Essays]

Research Papers
1231 words (3.5 pages)

Katherine Mansfield's Miss Brill Essay

- Illusion vs. Reality in Miss Brill "Miss Brill" by Katherine Mansfield is set the Jardins Publiques in France. Every Sunday Miss Brill looks forward to getting dressed up and visiting the park, where she enjoys people watching. Her weekly visits to the park are undoubtedly the highlight of her week, bringing her great joy and satisfaction. There are many illusions in this story, in this essay I intend to show three different illusions Miss Brill uses to make herself happy and how her reality is shattered at the end of the story by a chance remark....   [tags: Miss Brill Essays]

Research Papers
625 words (1.8 pages)

Related Searches

She is content in her fantasy world, and devastated when removed from it. The theme outlines the effects of Miss Brill?s change.

Change is evident in ?Miss Brill?. The main character, enjoying life, then realizes she is lonely. The development of Miss Brill is shown through symbolism, characterization, and theme. By analyzing these three elements, change is recognizable in the character Miss Brill.


Bibliography:

Thomas R Arp, and Greg Johnson, Perrine's Literature: Structure, Sound, and Sense, 8th ed. [Fort Worth: Harcourt, 2002] 182)

Return to 123HelpMe.com