Dalloway essay

The very sight of Sir William makes Clarissa uncomfortable, and she is highly sensitive to his desire to convert people to his worldview. Her awareness and vulnerability to Sir William’s and Miss Kilman’s greed for power comes from her ability to think deeply and empathize with others’ emotions and motivations. Septimus also has this acute awareness about the world around him, and he is even more susceptible to conversion than Clarissa, due to his low social status. English society is another force that tries to convert people, but it also, to some extent, protects the upper class from the control of someone like Sir William. While Lady Bradshaw succumbs to social—and marital—pressure, Lady Bruton, in contrast, is safe from Sir William’s clutches due to her close association with the empire. She may have lost her sense of “proportion” with her Canada obsession, but other members of her class will indulge and protect her. Characters who are more individual, like Clarissa and Septimus, are more at risk than those who view themselves purely as part of English society.

The character of Miss Kilman is treated by the writer with exceptional ruthlessness. She describes her as a "monster", ugly body, hair, no clothes suited her, she wore very simple and green cloth indeed, which made her nasty. Defined by a patriarchal society as a monster-woman, her consolation is not the religion which would keep balance and help to control the desire of flesh, but food. Sometimes it seemed that the only thing she lived for was food (except for Elizabeth). She is adverse of the maternal ideal. A mother offers her breast to her baby, tries to shelter the infant from every danger and rejects all of her wishes, push them back just to meet her child's demand and valet the baby. As opposed to these, Miss Kilman is adverse in everything. She only wants to feed her hunger physically and mentally as well. She does not give, she takes. Miss Kilman is the "other" Madonna, the reverse side of the Virgin Mary's image. She tries to achieve a birth in the other way round, as she wants to absorb Elizabeth. She wanted to make Elizabeth hers forever and never let her.  [ 13 ]  

Dalloway essay

dalloway essay


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