A Character Analysis of Katherine Mansfield's Miss Brill Essay

830 Words4 Pages
Katherine Mansfield's "Miss Brill" is a woman self-contained, not pessimistic but settled, content. She is not a victim of her circumstances, but the satisfied creator of them. You could say she has her ducks lined up the way she wants them. Through the character of Miss Brill, Katherine Mansfield reveals a woman who has the ability to enjoy a simple world of her own elaborate creation. Miss Brill is a single woman, probably in her mid to late fifties. She lives alone in a very small space without even a cat or bird. She has a collection of vintage clothing. Her physical appearance is only alluded to in the 18-paragraph short story by Mansfield, but in reading about a day in her life, one has the impression of an intelligent, sensitive…show more content…
Miss Brill engages in shameless people watching. She has taken the practice of keen observation and elevated it to an art form. Miss Brill ascribes to the notion that since we all coexist on this planet, we are acting out our lives alongside each other, the entire world is a stage and we are all in it together. She understands that most people do not feel quite so connected to one another and that her rose-colored-glasses-approach to life is not universal, but still she carries on, thriving amongst the non-believers, quietly living out her interpretation of days. Miss Brill enjoys feeling connected not only to the people around her but also to favorite objects in her life. She croons to her old fur stole "Dear little thing!" which she lovingly refers to as "Little rogue!"(1) They have enjoyed many dressy days together and Miss Brill views the fur stole as her pet. While conversing with old, stuffed garments may seem strange, she is more or less just talking to herself. How much more would a puppy understand? Would Miss Brill appear saner if she chatted with a kitty or perhaps a goldfish? Aside from the smashed-in nose, her little stole would look quite realistic curled up on her duck-feather quilt, a furry friend looking up at its owner with fervent eyes, waiting to be stroked, impatient to be wrapped around the shoulders of its miss, silently nipping its own tail as they stroll to their favorite destination. The fact that Miss

More about A Character Analysis of Katherine Mansfield's Miss Brill Essay

Open Document