Sexuality In Martha Kolmar's

770 Words4 Pages
Throughout the novel, Martha Wolg is often found talking or thinking about sexuality; one way to interpret this is to assume that Martha lacks in confidence in her sexuality. Throughout this paper, I will prove this by considering that Martha idolizes her daughter’s physical appearance, Martha frequent comments on her own physical appearance, and her relationship with men throughout the novel.
One instance in which Martha demonstrates that she lacks confidence in her own sexuality is evident in part two when Martha goes into great detail about Ursula’s, her five-year-old daughter, primary and secondary sex characteristics. On page 41, after Martha returned home after visiting her daughter at the hospital, she reminisces about the last time she gave her daughter a bath. In this memory, she describes Ursula’s breasts as “little breasts that still seemed like weak unclear stars” and her vulva as “a glowing, budding flower, an unopened flower . . . so lovely, so sweet”. Kolmar uses soft (“glowing”, “weak”, and “lovely”) and nature-based (“stars”,
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From close reading of the beginning of the text, it is obvious that Martha was verbally abused by both her late husband and his father. Evidence for this is easily seen towards the beginning of the novel when Martha’s late husband, Friedrich Wolg, makes comments about only wanting a lover. On page 13, he says “Actually, I don’t want a wife, only a lover”. Friedrich’s father makes similar comments about Martha’s sexuality saying “her severity. . . would not die with the wedding and would prevent the wife from being a companion” (p. 11). This type of verbal abuse, verbal abuse that comes from the mouth of a loved one about a person’s sexuality, can often have traumatic effect on that abused person’s perception of sexuality later in future
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