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Miss Brill

The short story “Miss Brill” by Katherine Mansfield is about and elderly English teacher in France who spends her Sundays in the park. She is very lonely and has a specific bench that she sits on every week where she listens to the band and watches people pass by. Due to her lack of relationships, she has created a fantasy life for herself in which she believes that she is a much more glamorous woman than what she really is. Mansfield uses this story to describe how many elderly people deal with the aging process by denying their appearances and circumstances. Miss Brill owns a fur, which she treats as if it were a pet, apparently to compensate for her loneliness and her lack of connection with others. She calls the fur a “rogue” with “sad eyes” as if the fur had emotions or a personality. She overlooks what she thinks are insignificant blemishes like its nose. She says she will add “a little dab of sealing wax when the time came.” The fur is a representation of how she sees her self. She overlooks the flaw in herself that have come from age. Miss Brill sees a woman with an ermine toque who seems to be a mirror image of herself, and that helps define her further. The ermine toque that the woman is wearing is described as being bought when the woman’s hair was yellow. This leads the reader to believe that both the woman’s hair and the fur had changed with time. The author further describes the woman and her toque saying that the woman’s hair, face, and eyes are all the same color as the “shabby” ermine. The woman seems very happy and excited to be at the park and to be meeting a gentleman there. When she go to him and starts chattering away she is quickly dismissed with a puff of smoke in the face. As the man walks away she just moves on acting as if she has found someone else to talk to. There are several traits that both Miss Brill and the woman with the ermine toque share. They both have...

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Miss Brill. (1969, December 31). In DirectEssays.com. Retrieved 11:47, September 30, 2014, from http://www.megaessays.com/viewpaper/22742.html