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dolls house

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  • December 9, 2013
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Katherine Mansfield “The doll's house”

The world of the adults seems to be in conflict with the world of the children in Katherine Mansfields “the doll house”. The dolls house represents this conflict by pointing out the divide between the upper and lower class citizen which all the adults clearly understand and the children don’t fully understand or believe in. Throughout the story we see the clear line that has been drawn by the adults in regards to the upper and lower class. The adults have a very black and white thought process when it comes to status. However as we see the children, especially the younger ones have not fully been indoctrinated into this mindset, looking at the world with more of a open mind and more accepting of others.

The dolls house given to the Burnell children depicts inequality that is not fully understood by the children. Inside the dolls house we find beautiful, never before seen objects, “it was too much for them. they had never seen anything like it in their lives.” (Mansfield 751). 1 At the same time the dolls house had simple basic items such as the lamp which is 2

overlooked and under appreciated by most. All the kids want to see the dolls house, however do to inequality not all the kids are privileged enough to see the house, “the line had to be drawn somewhere. It was drawn at the Kelveys.” Kezia doesn't see the line clearly drawn as she asks her mother if she can show the dolls house to the Kelveys. After her mother tells her that she can not show them the house Kezia asks, “But why not?” This reinforces the idea that Kezia's mind has not been fully shaped and influenced by the adults adding to the conflicting view points of the adults and children worlds.

Katherine Mansfield uses the fine details in the dolls house to show the reader how the adults have such strong beliefs and set on social inequality that they no longer can appreciate greatness no matter where it comes from. “But the smell...