Formal Analysis of Miss Brill by Katherine Mansfield

Formal Analysis代写 The story mood of narration derives us of laughing at Miss Brill or dismissing her as a grotesque madwoman.


An old lady trapped between the illusion of reality and fantasy world

Who perceive the world as her center stage and creates entertaining characters out of loneliness, encounters that harsh reality of being a spectator. In her short story, ‘Miss Brill’ Kathrine Mansfield introduces the introverted and simple-minded only thinking of herself, imagine herself as an actress in an absurdly illusioned theater, and her only friend is shabby fur stole. The story mood of narration derives us of laughing at Miss Brill or dismissing her as a grotesque madwoman. Through the artful and creative manner through which Mansfield narrates the story using a unique plot and characters, Miss Brill is portrayed in the way convincing to evoke our sympathy.

Mansfield tells the story from the third-person perspective  Formal Analysis代写

So that reader shares Miss Brill’s perception and appreciate how her character is romanticized. The dramatic ironic setting used by the writer assist in the understanding of her role (Davison p. 3). Mansfield invites us to share in the pleasure of Miss Brill’s delightful views her world in her usual Sunday stroll in the park. In so doing, the writer vividly explains the feelings and mood that evening fine and cheerful compared to Sunday that preceded it.

Moreover, through the use of third person, the narrator convinces the reader to view Miss Brill from a personal perspective while sharing her perceptions on things around her. The creation makes the reader see her as a lonely woman in the park. The dual invites developed by the narrator drives the audience to see Miss Brill as a person suppressing self-pity through fantasy.

The character of Miss Brill is revealed the reader through her lens when viewing people in the park.  Formal Analysis代写

She refers to them through the type and color of cloth because she barely knew any of them. For instance, “a fine old man in a velvet coat” (Mansfield p. 409), an Englishman “wearing a dreadful Panama hat,” “little boys with big white silk bows under their chins”. According to her, the band was performing for her benefit, and to the reader the group knew her existence, and hence they played the music carelessly (p. 408). Some characters according to her description were not appealing, and their behaviors were appalling not only to her but also the reader. Such awkward characters like the couple seated next to her and a beautiful lady who threw away a bunch of violets made her sad.

Also, the rowdy girls who almost knocked down an older adult made her see the cruelty of the world (p. 409). Although Miss Brill was angered by some of the characters and sympathetic to others, her reactions depicted that of an audience in a movie theatre. Generally looking, she looks innocent and unknowingly suffering deprivation of the world’s happiness and lacks comprehension of human nasty acts and motives. However, was she childlike or for a fact an actress as she sees herself?

Out the many characters  Formal Analysis代写

Miss Brill identified with one, the one wearing “ermine toque she had bought when her hair was yellow (p. 409).” Unwittingly, Miss Brill describes the woman as a reflection of herself. For example, she pointed at her “shabby ermine” and “tiny yellowish paw” (p. 409). She would not have described her fur as “shabby,” though the reader knows it as shabby. On the other side, is a rude man to the lady through his disrespectful act of blowing cigarette smoke on her face.

Like her, the woman is also lonely. However, that never mattered much to Miss Brill as she compared it to theatre performance with the band playing background music. The encounter is not well explained to the reader. One may ask, what if the woman was a prostitute? She could have been, but to Miss Brill, this idea was unfathomable because she had already identified with her the same way theatre audience identify with some characters in the play.

Formal Analysis代写
Formal Analysis代写

Additionally, when the woman with “ermine toque turned, raised her hand as though she had seen someone else, much nicer, just over there, and pattered away” was a foreshadow Miss Brill encounter with young adolescents. Miss Brill is living vicariously through the interpretation of the performance of other people.

Ironically, Miss Brill perceive the old couples next to her as ” odd, silent, nearly all old, and … come from dark little rooms… even cupboards!” (p. 409). Later in the story, she became enthusiastic as depicted in the narrative:

“And then she too, she too, and the others on the benches–they would come in with a kind of accompaniment–something low. That scarcely rose or fell, something so beautiful–moving” (p. 410).

Unlike herself, Miss Brill identify other small features, such as side characters.  Formal Analysis代写

However, perhaps Miss Brill is not as simple-minded as she partly been portrayed by the story. The narrator gives the reader a hint that Miss Brill avoided being self-aware and not because she was not aware of. It is established in the first paragraph when her feeling is described as “light and sad” and then changed to “something gentle seemed to move in her bosom”. (p. 408) Her feeling is also corrected in the afternoon as sad, but she seemed to like the music from the band. Miss Brill is suppressing her sadness. Also, looking at her queer and shy feeling when telling her pupil how she spends her Sunday afternoons betrays admission of loneliness.

Throughout the story, Miss Brill was resisting to the feeling of sadness.

She gave life to what she saw and heard, being sensitive to the music, and being delighted by small things. Miss Brill becomes an actress by refusing to accept loneliness. She becomes a dramatist when actively countering the feeling of sadness and self-pity and hence force the reader to sympathize and admire her. The main reason the reader eventually pities her is the sharp contrast between liveliness and the beautiful picture she paints of the park. However, the question that is subconsciously evoked is whether other characters were any better than Miss Brill.

Overall, the creative plot makes the reader sympathize with Miss Brill.  Formal Analysis代写

It forces the reader to identify Miss Brill excitement of her being more than just an observer but a participant. (Temizkan p. 933) Though the reader may not believe the whole company in the park share her feeling, it is true Miss Brill was is at the verge of genuine personal acceptance. The reader’s perception of the whole story might be differing from that of Miss Brill. But she is contagious with her enthusiasm, mainly when two young players emerged. It is a terrible let down to the audience when the two thoughtless adolescents talked ill of her fur (p. 410).

The words affected her since the fur was an emblem of her identity. After all, she had no role to play. Mansfield controlled the conclusion is an understatement when suddenly Miss Brill packed and left for her “little, dark room” (p. 410). In essence, the reader sympathizes with Miss Brill because she was in denial of her role in life.

We are all actors in all aspects of our life, and so was Miss Brill and people in the park. The readers may sympathize with her not because she is pitiful, but because she was shrugged and denied a chance on the stage a thing that all reader fear in real life. Mansfield has creatively managed to touch the fear of readers if not their hearts.

Work Cited  Formal Analysis代写

Formal Analysis代写
Formal Analysis代写

Davison, W. Phillips. “The third-person effect in communication.” Public opinion quarterly 47.1 (1983): 1-15.

Mansfield, Katherine. “Miss Brill.” Stories for further reading, pp. 408-410.

Temizkan, Mehmet. “The Effect of Creative Writing Activities on the Story Writing Skill.” Educational Sciences: Theory and Practice 11.2 (2011): 933-939.


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