My Mother and Her Sister

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My Mother and her Sister

The short story “My Mother and her Sister” by Jane Rogers, is about Dorothy, her daughter who is our narrator and her sister, Lucy who is now 75 years old. We never hear that the narrator is a woman, but I assume she is because she is feeling guilty and gratitude in connection with aunt Lucy, her view on happiness with a happy marriage, seems to be feminine. Normally a man wouldn’t care that much about serving a good dinner, but she gets sad because she can’t make a proper meal to her aunt Lucy, just like she always made them for her. Lucy has 5 children and used to be a stay at home mom, who made homemade jam, knitted for the children and always made nice home cooked meals for the family. As she has gotten older she has changed a lot and has become close to the opposite of what she used to be like. Her everyday life now consists of knitting and watching TV. She has no interest in talking and prefers meals out of the microwave. From the narrator’s point of view Lucy’s attempt to give her family a good life gave her life meaning, but now the narrator sees that Lucy isn’t the woman she thought she was: “I always thought of her as an easy, chatty woman, good at small talk and making you feel home. But she’s self-contained and silent, she’s composed.” L. 38. Now she sees that her aunt is not only a housewife, but also a woman with feelings. When you look at the extract from “The Women of England: Their Social Duties and Domestic Habits” you can see that the description of a appropriate woman fits perfectly with the narrator’s understanding of her aunt Lucy: “…seeking my own happiness only in the happiness of others.” L.12. That was exactly what Lucy did for her husband, her children and her nieces and nephews. The narrator’s mother was the direct opposite. She wanted to pass her values on to her children: “We learned from our mother that nothing is more important that your freedom, and that familiarity breeds contempt.” L.13. Freedom,...
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