Miss Brill

Topics: William Faulkner, Katherine Mansfield, Self-esteem Pages: 3 (919 words) Published: March 11, 2014


Lonely In Society
Short Stories “Miss Brill” by Katherine Mansfield and “A Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner are painfully sad. The authors use of alienation in society have both similarities and differences. Miss Brill and Miss Emily experience that being lonely can be destructive to their self-esteem which prevents them from having or maintaining relationships with others. It has become evident that society has driven Miss Brill to isolation and has alienated Emily from love.

Miss Brill is a lonely and slightly delusional women. During the course of the story, Miss Brill seems to care about her appearance. When getting dressed she is “glad that she has decided on her fur” (183). Also, in order to look her best on her Sunday outing, she believes that a “little rogue” (184) is “absolutely necessary” (184). MIss Brill is fascinated by all the people in the park that she goes to every Sunday. Miss Brill gets excited to eavesdrop on all the conversations that are going on around her. Although Miss Brill listens to the couples who sit on the bench next to her, she never engages in any conversation. Instead she becomes more and more intrigues with the immediate atmosphere until she reaches a state of delusion.

She begins to fantasize that her life is a play and “they were all on the stage. . . they were acting” (185). This insinuates that all people in the park are actors and that she is the star of the show, exemplifying her emotional insecurities. This fantasy seems to build up her self-esteem by her imagining herself as such a star in a play while getting only a temporary feeling of self worth. Furthermore, one particular Sunday afternoon while Miss Brill is sitting on the bench, she notices a young couple sitting on the other end. The boy wants to kiss the girl and becomes affectionate with her. But the young women is not interested. “No, not now, not her, I can’t” said the girl. “But why? “Because of that stupid old thing at the...
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