The Narration Of Girl In Jamaica Kincaid's Girl

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Throughout our lives, as girls, we have been taught how to act, how to dress, how to act as a “young lady”. In the short story Girl by Jamaica Kincaid, we have seen how the narrator has strong values of how young women should be like and intensely advocates her daughter’s life to be traditional and most importantly gives her advice and warning her from becoming a “slut”. The narrator makes it very clear of how her daughter should act, giving her an endless list in order for her to be looked as a “good girl”. The narrator wants her daughter to be looked as a “good girl” because she wants to protect her by preventing the bad outcomes if she ever turns into a “slut”. The setting in Girl takes place in the West Indies; which has a significant influence of the narrator’s worldviews and values. Traditionally, women belong at home and should act respectfully which is why we see the narrator trying to force that culture into her daughter. Girl represents one of the examples that as society we follow; we determine the respect a woman deserves by how she is expected to behave.…show more content…
Social status has an influence in her way of thinking because she wants her daughter to be seen as the ideal girl, daughter, and woman. “This is how you smile to someone you don't like too much; this is how you smile to someone you don't like at all; this is how you smile to someone you like completely” (Kincaid). Even at an early age, Girl is taught to act a certain way in order for people around her to like her. Girl is taught to not talk to “wharf-rat boys”, how to set a table when guests are around, how to behave around men, how to eat in front of people, and even how to sweep her yard. These are all examples that represent the importance of how the narrator wants her life to be perceived at, because she cares about what the people in her community think.
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