The Garden Party

Topics: Social class, Working class, Fiction Pages: 2 (811 words) Published: March 25, 2013
The Garden Party is written by Katherine Mansfield, a New Zealand prominent modernist writer of short fiction. Set in colonial New Zealand, "The Garden Party" falls into two clearly differentiated parts. For the major characters, Laura Sheridan, Mrs. Sheridan, Meg Sheridan, Jose Sheridan and Laurie Sheridan are considered by because they appeared in the story quite often. And for the minor characters, they are mostly the workers and helpers in the party, except for Mr. Sheridan and Mr. Scott. From this short story, we have encountered some literary theories. First theory that we have analysed is cultural theory. “The Garden Party” is a story about the differences between the upper class and the lower class lives. The Sheridan family represents the upper class while the Scotts represent the lower class. Mansfield gives certain importance for many words by repeating them persistently, especially hats, lilies, flowers, all those are symbols of wealth and superiority, in connection to the Sheridans. The Sheridan’s life appears more comfortable even when Mansfield is talking about them she uses only positive images, pleasure, flowers, songs, even in the house is highly organized. While talking about the Scotts and their class, only images of dark, ugliness, sorrow, disorder, and chaos came to our minds. Psychoanalysis theory is also one of the theories that we have encountered in this short story. "The Garden Party" traces the psychological and moral growth of Laura Sheridan. The story presents her adolescent confusion regarding the social values of her family and her awakening to a more mature perception of reality after her exposure to poverty and death at the carter's cottage. The third theory will be likely criticism theory. Most criticism of Katherine Mansfield's short story "The Garden Party" concentrates on the story as a story of the growth and maturity of a young idealistic...
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