Hulga In The Short Story 'Good Country People'

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Evana Baggett Sun God Freshman English 28 September 2016 In the short story Good Country People Hulga believes herself to be intellectually superior. The quote “Hulga had learned to tolerate Mrs.Freeman who saved her from talks with her mother.” This shows Hugla doesn't get along to well with her mother. This is because Hugla thinks her mother is stupid. Hulga, spends her entire adult life doing her best to deny and rebel against her mother's optimistic attitude. As we know from the story Hulga thinks very highly of herself because she had a PhD in philosophy. It is precisely Hulga's Ph.D. degree in philosophy which creates a major problem between the two women. Mrs. Hopewell thinks that girls should go to school and have a good time ,…show more content…
When Hulga was in a hunting accident causing her to lose her leg she was given a wooden leg. As Hulga celebrates her wooden leg, it also contributes to her self-loathing. She gets a perverse sense of pleasure from being as unattractive as possible, so her wooden leg just adds to her self image as being ugly.When Hulga goes on her date she has to lie about her age to make her look younger but as we know it doesn't work. In this story Hulga obviously does not know how to prepare herself to look attractive for her date. This could be blamed on her mom. Hulga's manner of dress also contributes to the vast misunderstanding that exists between the two women. Mrs. Hopewell thinks that Hulga's wearing "a six-year-old skirt and a yellow sweatshirt with a faded cowboy on a horse embossed on it" is idiotic, proof that despite Hulga's Ph.D. and her name change, she is "still a child."In addition to Hulga's wearing inappropriate clothes, her name change (from "Joy" to "Hulga") cut such a wound into Mrs. Hopewell that she will never entirely heal. To change one's name from "Joy" to "Hulga," according to Mrs. Hopewell, was an act of ridiculously immature rebellion. Mrs. Hopewell is convinced that Joy pondered until she "hit upon the ugliest name in any language" and then legally changed her name. In the passage there is many different points where Hugla shows jealousy towards other people like…show more content…
For one example,she expects “The bible man” to believe she is seventeen when she is and looks much older.Hulga also does not understand the concept of perfume also stated in paragraph two.”During the night she imagined that she seduced him. She imagined that things came to such a pass that she very easily seduced him and that then, of course, she had to deal with his remorse. True genius can get an idea across even to an inferior mind. She imagined that she took his remorse in hand and changed it into a deeper understanding of life. She took all his shame away and turned it into something useful.” Here we see Hulga planning to use what she thinks is her position of power to manipulate Manley, whom she believes to be vulnerable. It's sort of funny Like, she thinks she's so worldly she calls herself a "true genius" that she's in a position to teach him a thing or two… but, of course, she isn't worldly at all, and he's the one who winds up giving her what might be called "a deeper understanding of life." We can see her weak heart and lost leg as symbols for her vulnerability. Yes, her physical heart is weak, but so it her metaphorical one she is not wise to the ways of the world and the ways in which people work. So while she stands steadily in the company she keeps at home, she's actually on shaky footing when she encounters someone from beyond the safety of her home. Throughout the story Manley pointer
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