Dealing with Social Ostracism in ‘The Doll’s House' by Katherine Mansfield

1235 WordsJun 20, 20185 Pages
Anyone who lived through high school gym class knows the desperation of being picked last for the sports team. The same hurt feelings bubble up when you are excluded from lunch with co-workers, fail to land the job interviewed for or are dumped by a romantic partner. Within a society, social classes are unavoidable. In the short story ‘The Doll’s House’, the author, Katherine Mansfield examines the difficulties dealing with class-consciousness and social ostracism in this society, also the influence on Isabel by Aunt Beryl. Mansfield uses various language techniques to intensify the message, class prejudice corrupts innocence and egalitarian attitude. Social groups have long been a part of human history. Categorizing people into "us"…show more content…
Isabel speaks of the lamp indicates that she does not find it out of the ordinary; Yellow is a primary colour which represents the shallow of human dynamic of Isabel. She forms an opinion on someone based purely on what she sees on the surface and aware of social consciousness. Isabel has a feeling, that by social ranking, she is superior. Her purity and egalitarian attitude are corrupted as concept of class prejudice enters her life. Mansfield also uses metaphor and dialogue To intensify the message.... In the story, the way in which the Burnell girls are treated as school celebrities because of the dollhouse. The girls at the playground put their hands around Burnell Children, talk to Burnell children, and ask for turns to see the dollhouse. This shows the dollhouse as a symbol of class separation and the girls are fitted to penetrate the superior world created by social class, which intensifies the innocence of the girls are corrupted. The metaphor uses in the story, ‘Playtime came and Isabel was surrounded. The girls of her class nearly fought to put their arms round her, to walk away with her, to beam flatteringly, to be her special friend. She held quite a court under the huge pine trees at the side of the playground. Nudging, giggling together, the little girls pressed up close.’- held court implies that Isabel is comparing to some kind of Queen surrounded by her ladies-in-waiting. The doll’s house has given her power and the sudden popularity that Isabel gains

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