I stand here ironing by tillie olsen summary. I Stand Here Ironing Historical Context Summary & Analysis 2022-10-12
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"I Stand Here Ironing" is a short story by Tillie Olsen that tells the poignant and emotional tale of a mother struggling to come to terms with her past mistakes and the challenges of raising her daughter in difficult circumstances. The story is narrated in the first person by the mother, who reflects on her life as she stands at the ironing board, trying to smooth out the wrinkles in a shirt.
The mother in the story is a young, single mother who has had to struggle to provide for her children on her own. She is overwhelmed by the demands of motherhood and the challenges of trying to make ends meet. Despite her best efforts, she often feels like she has failed her children, and this sense of guilt and failure weighs heavily on her.
As the mother reflects on her life, she talks about the various challenges she has faced and the mistakes she has made. She talks about the difficulties of raising a child on her own, and the sacrifices she has had to make in order to provide for her family. She also talks about the ways in which she has struggled to connect with her daughter, who she describes as a "strange, quiet child" who has always been difficult to understand.
Despite the challenges and hardships that the mother has faced, she remains deeply devoted to her children and is determined to do whatever it takes to provide for them. She is proud of the progress they have made and the person her daughter has become, and she is grateful for the support and love that she has received from her family and community.
In conclusion, "I Stand Here Ironing" is a powerful and poignant story that showcases the struggles and challenges of motherhood and the enduring love and devotion of a mother for her children. It is a story that will resonate with anyone who has struggled to balance the demands of parenting with the demands of everyday life, and it is a testament to the strength and resilience of the human spirit.
MotherDaughter Relationship In “I Stand Here Ironing” Summary And Analysis Essay
Emily was a beautiful baby, full of life and happiness. All the mother desires is for Emily to believe in herself and learn how to improve her future life, even with the struggles she grew up with. The mother loves her daughter greatly, but she does not have the means of providing for her child as she would like to. So all that is in her will not bloom-but in how many does it? The narrative style reflects this approach, as the narrator shifts between time periods with little explicit transition between them. Well, it is usual for mothers to want the best for their children. At one point, Emily becomes ill enough that the narrator and her new husband choose to send her away to live at a convalescent home for eight months, where Emily becomes even more unhappy. In telling her story, the narrator is trying to transcend her identity as a parent, to declare herself as a more complete and complex individual who has also suffered the types of disappointments that now haunt her daughter.
I Stand Here Ironing Structure and Point of View Summary & Analysis
It is portrayed as the more flattened you are, the more hardships you have been through. Experts say that how a mother brings up her kid greatly affects the psychological thinking of her child. Those trying years have left an indelible mark on the narrator, who openly cites the permanent effect that this inescapable crisis had not only on her family but also on her psyche. Thus, the theme of coming to terms with and overcoming the past hardships emerges. While Emily's mother cannot resist the iron and the cultural forces it represents, she hopes Emily will be able to see herself beyond that, to become an individual who refuses to yield to and be defined by it.
Analysis Of Literary Elements In Tillie Olsen’s I Stand Here Ironing: [Essay Example], 1296 words GradesFixer
The constant motion of the ironing is like a sedative to the mother, as it calms her greatly. While the narrator was in the hospital delivering her second daughter, Unfortunately, Emily did not recover easily from the measles, and suffered significant weight loss and terrible nightmares. This lack of control could be particularly true for a female author in Olsen's time, since a woman's work could be seriously limited and marred by oppressive cultural forces. As the narrator believes that she had not raised Emily properly due to the unfortunate situations that have emerged in her life. There are numerous reasons why a child behaves in a certain way or why he or she grew up to be the person they are now.
Tell Me a Riddle “I Stand Here Ironing” Summary and Analysis
Having had to be a mother from an unusually young age, she knows how hard a woman must work to be recognized, and this realization had skewed her perspective much as it has her mother's. In the present, Emily enters, joking about how her mother is always ironing. When Emily returns, she is thin, nervous, and prone to illness, changes that cause the narrator guilt and sadness. While there, Emily contracted chicken pox, which replaced her beauty with pock-marks. It was also a huge adjustment when her mother remarried but things got worse when she had four younger siblings. Further, the exact time period is never specified, but can be assumed to be the 1950s based on what is provided.
The story concludes with her mother hoping that Emily learns to fully find herself and allow her potential to be fulfilled. An unreliable narrator may lie or alter or withhold information to make him- or herself look good or serve a personal agenda of some kind. The narrator has a personal reason for identifying a broad range of forces at play in shaping Emily: she wants to lessen her unbearable feelings of guilt. This may be due to competition with other parents that they have produced a genius. What this point of view requires is that the reader dig into the character's voice to understand the situation, while also reinforcing the idea that this mother does not - and cannot ever - full understand the depths of her daughter's pain and personality.
Tillie Olsen’s I Stand Here Ironing: Summary & Analysis
Emily's mother mourns that Emily had to grow up in a superficial and jealous world where physical appearance mattered too much. That her pain can be explained by social forces means little; all that matters to society is whether she is beautiful. World War II, in particular, created an interesting situation for women. Once Emily gradually began to find herself, her mother gained a speck of hope for Emily, however, it was already too late as Emily had pushed too far away from her mother to go back now. Emily's mother tells how she eventually got remarried, thereby easing the family's financial burdens. All of these themes are explored through the metaphor of ironing. However, as the story goes on the mother continues to learn more about her daughter, Emily.
I Stand Here Ironing Historical Context Summary & Analysis
The motherhood metaphor within "I Stand Here Ironing" also illustrates how many profound female experiences had been neglected by literature. In particular, the narrator seems to understand her story as one of a female. Again, the narrator suspects that these domestic burdens made life difficult for Emily and worries that she, the narrator, was too distracted to adequately express her love for Emily. . Unexpectedly, she found her real self, what her passion was without the supervision of her mother. And during this time, America was experiencing the Great Depression.
However, it was mother-daughter relationship shown in these emotion-steering novels. And, as the mother stands there ironing, she contemplates her daughter and the troubles that they have. With Emily, her first, she only ever expressed a worried face, which has turned the girl into a somber, closed-off person. Or it may be due to their wants as kids that they did not achieve, so they want their children to be what they want to be. Finally, after eight months of Emily's negligible progress, a social worker allowed Emily to return home to her family. During the Depression years, many single, working mothers struggled with a lack of social services and financial support.
On the contrary, she had a knack for arts and comedy. As Emily grows older, the mother is regretful of the way Emily has grown up. The children received no nurturing, and were not even allowed to keep their letters from home. Sometimes, the child becomes a rebel due to this kind of bearing. Later on, Emily helps care for three more younger siblings while the narrator is busy working and managing the household. The short story by Tillie Olsen, I Stand Here Ironing, is an example of a mother-daughter struggle.
Emily's appearance did not improve even after returning home, and she grew lonely and dissatisfied because of pressures at school to conform to the "Shirley Temple" ideal 7. Much as an iron moves repeatedly over the fabric, the narrator constantly revisits the past, hoping to finally smooth out its rough edges and gain understanding. The narrator insists that the girl's seeming joyousness actually masks an underlying solemnity. GradeSaver, 29 August 2013 Web. However, Emily was often left alone during those times, and grew anxious. Although both mothers idolize the famous Shirley Temple, the first mother let he child be what she wants to be, while the other wanted her child to be a star.