In Catherine, Called Birdy, many women gave Birdy advice but she never really listenened to them, but when she did, she made a decision that changed her life forever. Her mother told her “Don't Stretch your legs longer than your stockings or your toes will stick out. You are so much already, Little Bird. Why not cease you fearful pounding against the bars of your cage and be content?” In other words, she is saying that she needs to be happy with what she has because what she has is all she needs. Also that she needs to stop trying to be who she is not.
So to defend her going to the city she claims that her mother is jealous of her happiness and doesnt wants Mariam to have the happiness that Nana never experienced. And in return, Nana proves to be firm on her threat and so she kills herself by hanging by the tree. This leaves Mariam with a strong sense of guilt throughout her life. "One could not count the moons that shimmer on her roofs, Or the thousand splendid suns that hide behind her walls" (172) The quote comes from a 17th Century poem by Saib-e-Tabrizi which was a beautiful poem written in praise of Kabul. Laila quotes it when they are leaving Kabul to flee to Pakistan for their safety.
Such as when her son Bailey does not want her to bring her cat Pitty Sing on the trip. Instead of arguing about it she just hides the cat in a basket and brings it anyway. The grandmother then wishes to go visit an old plantation along the way yet knows that Bailey will not want to do this, her solution to this is to let the children persuade him. She tells the children of a house filled with secret panels and hidden treasure, this in turn gets them excited and begging Bailey to take them there for a visit. It is quite clear that through her actions that the grandmother is very selfish thus trying to satisfy her selfishness by manipulating others.
As the family sets off for their trip, all the grandmother does is complain that she would rather go to Tennessee. When she wasn’t even really invited, but rather going because she doesn’t like to miss out on anything. “Afraid she’d miss something. She has to go everywhere we go.” (O’Connor 367). As the trip is under way she believes she is in another state, and mistakes a road for another one.
I would not be able answer my conscience if I did.” She is too paranoid. She tries to control her son by trying to convince him to go on a vacation to Tennessee instead of Florida. On their way she brings her cat along she makes all kinds of excuse why the cat can’t stay at home. Also the grandmother goes to great lengths to dress in her best clothes. Another example of Southern Gothic.
The grandmother refers to the boy as a pickaninny and a nigger, two terms that are used to racially degrade African Americans, coloreds, or blacks. As the family passes a what seems to be familiar road the grandmother lies to her grandchildren, June Star and John Wesley, about a hidden passage in her old plantation home in Georgia. She lies to the children so they can convince their father to defer from the road and visit here old plantation home on a abandoned road. While traveling on the vacant road the grandmother remembers that the plantation home is in Tennessee, but is too ashamed to tell her family. After a car accident occurs the family crosses paths with The Misfit, who eventually kills the entire family.
The first thing we learned about the grandmother is that she does not want to go on the family vacation to Florida. She has relatives to see in Tennessee so she tries to persuade Bailey, the father in the story, not to go. The grandmother tries to scare him with reports of a criminal on the loose and guilt trip him about taking his children there. She states, "Just you read it. I wouldn't take my children in any direction with a criminal like that aloose in it.
She is willing to hire Carpetbaggers and freed slaves to get the cheapest labor for her business. The old southern society (that she has always been a part of) is disapproving of any associations with these groups of people. Scarlett, like Machiavelli believed that “Extreme situations call for extreme measures.” While the people around her lamented the “Old South” and watched their homes go on the auction blocks, she chose to fight for her plantation in any way that she saw fit. She took on the head of the household role in a time that was not accepting of women except as window dressing. Scarlett’s motivations are “derived from the power of the love of her subjects,” as Machiavelli suggests.
Although she greatly loves her dog, she somehow manages to sacrifice him, all to protect the unspoken higher commitments she feels for her daughter and grandchild. One subtheme is the inner turmoil and isolation some may feel when trapped in an unfair situation. When the granddaughter learns that she has to stay with her grandma, she feels this is an injustice and flees alone down a quiet road. The grandmother feels powerless to alter the past that has brought her to this point, stuck with another rebellious child, so she Pg. 2 escapes to Sylvie’s gravesite.
There are many ways that one can compare Abigail’s relationship to her horse and how she always compares everything about him to John Marsh and they way the both of them make her feel, relates herself to the story of baby Jesus being born and how she wants to be saved from her loneliness. At the beginning of the story Christmas 1910, Abigail mentions the drought and how her family is not very wealthy. Even though she felt bad leaving her family she would always take the time to go ride her horse, Sam. Sometimes she felt guilty about leaving, she stated, “Bad enough that I felt like a selfish girl to slip out of the presence of my kin whenever I had the chance and “take up” with Sam my saddle horse…” (Butler 181). The way that Abigail explains Sam does not sound like something one would say when one is going off to ride one’s horse.