My Oedipus Complex: A Model Answer
Ahsan Habib (English Department, Rajshahi University)
“My Oedipus Complex” by Frank O’Connor is a humorous story of a young boy, namely Larry who grows up in his own world with just himself and his mother while his father remains in the army all through the war. But when the father comes back from the war, he starts consuming all the attention and love of the mother. Subsequently, a new son, Sonny, is born into the family and the mother then directs all her affection only towards the new-born baby. Then Larry and his father come closer to each other.
At the very outset, Larry shows some signs of excitement and satisfaction when his father stays in the war. The father comes home and goes to the war mysteriously. His “Santa Claus entrances and exists” greatly interest Larry. Sometimes his father carries military equipments—such as “model tanks”, “Gurkha knives” with handles, “German helmets” and “cap badges”, “button sticks”, etc. and the boy enjoys rummaging through all these interesting things. He also gets pleasure from sleeping beside his mother, looking through the attic window and so on. In addition, he compares himself with “the sun, ready to illumine and rejoice.” Moreover, at the beginning of the third paragraph, he states that “The war was the most peaceful period of my [his] life.” As Larry lacks friends of his age and the only person he spends time with is his mother, he hits upon a plan and calls his feet “Mrs. Left and Mrs. Right”. And then he invents dramatic situations for them in which they discuss the problems of the day. Thus Larry remains in a state of happiness with his mother’s love and affection.
However, everything changes for Larry as soon as his father comes back from the war. In fact, Larry feels utterly upset and irritated. He finds his father “altogether less interesting.” His father is not wearing his uniform and does not have any “souveniors” from the war. At a point, the father starts...