Jamaica Kincaid's Girl

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In the short story “Girl” by Jamaica Kincaid talks about the oppressive nature of how women need to act in society. The short story is a girl’s mother telling the girl on how to act in such a way so she can be married and take care of a family. Kincaid points out to her audience some manners of which a lady would behave such as how to properly do house whole jobs, act in public, and go about socializing/presenting yourself in public. Kincaid uses the examples in her story from her own life growing up in a middle class family. One way Kincaid points out, these oppressive requirements is by explaining how to do chores around the house. Kincaid notifies her readers first about washing clothes, “wash the white clothes on Monday and put them on the stone heap;…show more content…
The mother goes throughout the whole story reiterating a point that she does not want her daughter looking like a slut. “this how you smile to someone you don’t like too much; this is how you smile at someone you don’t like at all; this how you smile to someone you like completely;” (Kincaid 814). The mother goes about telling the daughter what to do in such a fashion that might not have been effective as Kincaid pointed out in an interview after the story. Her mother also stresses “don’t swat down to play marbles – you are not a boy, you know;” (Kincaid 814). Towards the end of the dialogue packed short story, the mother who has showered the girl down with advice, and finishes with telling the girl how to make sure the bread is fresh, Kincaid implies, “ but what if the baker won’t let me feel the bread? (Kincaid 814)” The mother who has been stressing an issue questions her by saying “you mean to say that after all you are really going to be the kind of woman who the baker won’t let near the bread?” (Kincaid 814). The daughter is not understanding why she has to act like this, but the mother is forcing these responsibilities on the

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