Red Dress 1964

1220 WordsNov 8, 20105 Pages
Red dress-1946 is a short story from Dance of the happy shades (a collection of short stories) by Alice Munroe. It is about the great social pressures faced by the narrator, surrounding the chronological events that take place before, during and after a school dance. The ‘Red dress’ is the dress her mother makes her for the dance, when she would clearly like to buy one instead from a store, this suggests to us that she can-not afford readymade clothes which then leads us to presume she is of a lower socio-economic class. The story is written from the point of view of an adolescent girl in 1946 who is growing up. It is in first person narration which effectively carries the anxiety of the protagonist making it personal and leading the…show more content…
Around the house she wore no corset or stockings, she wore wedge-heeled shoes and ankle socks; her legs were marked with lumps of blue-green vein. I thought her squatting position shameless, even obscene…" This also gives an insight as to what the protagonist see’s a lady must be like as opposed her mother who she see’s in some lights as a failure as a women. The protagonists best friend a girl named Lonnie is categorised as the typical ‘normal’ girl, she is polite to adults and boy crazy. Through the descriptive language used it becomes evident her friend is two-faced (polite to grownups only when they are present), quote “Lonnie wore the composed polite appreciative expression that her disguise in the presence of grown-ups. She laughed at them and was a ferocious mimic, and they never knew." She is more adult, a good friend, and the manner in which she is presented indicated that she is from a higher social class. "It’s beautiful, said Lonnie, in her mild, sincere voice." When the story’s tone is anxious, the setting in which the story takes place is the school. The narrator effectively shows the protagonists view of the social hierarchy as based on popularity, experience and associated power through descriptive language. To indicate the protagonists perception of this descriptive words or phrases such as ‘I accepted his position, and mine, in the
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