Imagery In Katherine Mansfield's Miss Brill

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Katherine Mansfield wrote about an aged woman, Miss Brill who is isolated from the real world. Miss Brill attempts to build a fantasy life to protect herself from the harsh facts of her existence. The short story “Miss Brill” is very descriptive and has decent examples of imagery to help readers better understand and see what is happening. Robert Peltier mentioned that “Miss Brill” has a rise and fall in each paragraph, so in his overview of “Miss Brill”, he also “chose the rise and fall of every paragraph to fit her, and fit her on that day at that moment” (Peltier), to help readers picture what is happening. The character Miss Brill does not look past what is present, which causes her to be narrow minded and not understand why things happen …show more content…

Miss Brill is lonely, has a completely messed up mind, and tries to hide her true self by trying to live other people’s lives. Miss Brill views each person at the garden differently. The people who are mostly like her are the ones she judges the most, “Miss Brill had often noticed-there was something funny about nearly all of them. They were odd, silent, nearly all old, and from the way they stared they looked as though they’d just come from dark little rooms or even-even cupboards!” (Mansfield 185). She judges other people to make herself feel more superior and normal and to hide her true character. Later on as Miss Brill observes a young couple, “the hero and heroine, of course, just arrived from his father’s yacht” (p.188), she comes to the realization of who she truthfully is. This wholly destroys Miss Brill, causing her to change her typical plans and go home in grief, “But to-day she passed the baker’s by, climbed the stairs, went into the little dark room-her room like a cupboard… she unclasped the necklet quickly; quickly, without looking, laid it inside. But when she put the lid on she thought she heard something crying” (Mansfield 189). Terry White sums up the story of “Miss Brill” by writing, “Like the insidious illness that seems to be creeping to life inside her, Miss Brill is abruptly forced to confront the reality that her imagination seeks to escape”(White) The short story “Miss Brill” is very relatable and real. Like Mandel Miriam attempts to explain, “Miss Brill” contains more figurative language rather than actions. In particular, it explains that “Miss Brill” depends generally on images of sense and sound, but the senses of taste and touch are also displayed, “a faint chill, like a chill from a glass of iced water before you sip… She felt a tingling in her hands and arms”

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