Force In William Carlos Williams The Use Of Force

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Doctors’ amicable images are in the minds of most people, but William Carlos Williams depicts a bizarre doctor in his short story “The Use of Force”. The doctor is called to Olson’s home to diagnose a girl named Mathilda who is suspected to have diphtheria. Because of her uncooperativeness, the doctor has no other way working but to use force on Mathilda in order to check her throat and to confirm the diagnosis. In consideration of his using of force in this story, the doctor is becoming less dutiful and more hypocritical with the development of the story.
What cannot be denied is that the doctor’s using of force is based on his duty. As a doctor, he has the responsibility of diagnosing each of his patients and prescribing the right medicine or assigning medical treatment. Because of the fatal problem which the doctor suspected, Mathilda’s throat must be examined right at the first place. “When finally I got the wooden spatula behind the last teeth and just the point of it into the mouth cavity, she opened up for an instant but before I could see anything she came down again and gripped the wooden blade between her molars she reduced it to splinters before I could get it out again” (Williams 1592). Mathilda’s resistance and stubbornness undoubtedly increase the difficulty for the doctor to examine. However, even if Mathilda’s mouth is already hurt, the doctor has to continue diagnosing the illness because Mathilda is a patient and as her main doctor, he has the
responsibility to
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With the defend of the little girl is going on, the doctor starts to threaten the girl by saying that “Will you open it now by yourself or shall we have to open it for you?” (1591). This point demonstrates that the doctor is losing his patience little by little because of the girl’s continuing incooperation. And eventually the doctor is completely furious: “Then I grasped the child’s head with my left hand and tried to get the wooden tongue depressor between her teeth.”
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