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The metaphor used in “I Stand Here Ironing” by Tillie Olsen

Ideally, Tillie Olsen’s “I Stand Here Ironing” is a unique work that presents critical aspects of fusion motherhood. That is realized through the expression of experience as well as metaphor. The depiction of motherhood as stripped of romantic distortion and the ability to fight with powers related to the genuine metaphorical insight of critical aspects related to selfhood in contemporary society makes it stand out.

Life is cruel, and the phrase survival for fitness mostly applies. Consequently, the story properly correlates the ups and downs and the back-and-forth processes that people encounter to ensure the success of their lives. What that success looks like is still a question to consider. Imagine if a motorist is driving home at night with the headlight on. The driver is not likely to have a clear view of the entire journey, but with the limited space that is lit in front, there is the possibility of covering the whole trip. That’s what success means in a nutshell. The journey is usually never easy since uncertainties can arise from either side. The most critical aspect of moving and reaching the destination.

The story focuses on the beauty and blessings that stand amidst the difficult times in life. Mothers find it hard to bring up children with the number of challenges present in society. The only source of strength that such women bank on is keeping hope alive. Ironing presents some of the levels of the drug, and that is useful in the lives of such women. Such a drug keeps the mother calm as well as sedated.

The initial stages of the story seem simple and depict a greater sense of meditation in which a mother tries her best to reconstruct her daughter’s experience (Rubin 15). Ideally, that occurs when trying to relate the instance to the presence. The story’s beginning also presents a greater extent of pretense, which takes the form of a silent dialogue. Moreover, there is the existence of a mental occupation that denotes critical aspects of ironing. In the process, it is possible to have a broader view of the mother’s thought processes on the execution of various household duties. The mother managed to stand in a specific location, and any question asked managed to move her back and forth regarding the iron. Hence, the use of metaphor makes it possible to have a better understanding of the play. The level of depictions makes it possible to understand the experiences of Emily and the mother, and such an application in contemporary society is evident.

The reality that mothers pass through in contemporary society is articulated in the story, and most readers get a more profound sense of connection. The past mostly affects the lives of individuals, and detaching from it remains an uphill task. Even though such history is crucial in contrasting the present and future, it is imperative to deconstruct them and be mindful of improving productivity (Christian-Smith 50). Emily stands as a double narrator in the story. In one instance, the mother tries to illustrate the fears for parenthood using Emily’s case. On the other side, Emily faces some challenges due to the environment in which she was brought up.

Being from a humble background, meeting my basic needs was hard. According to literature, the existence of a double in any fiction denotes the existence of one character who serves as a twin and represents the other in the story. In most instances, the character is the protagonist and will present either similar or divergent characteristics on the theme of the play. That is the same case with Emily in the story. It is evident that Emily and their mother experienced the same life when they were nineteen, and they are all mothers now. The great depression experienced in their lives affected them, and that is what made their personality. Ideally, personality is a component of experience and knowledge. The most important aspect that most people find hard is to detach from such experiences and approach life as it is now. That makes it possible to become rational and make the best decision, positively impacting life.

In conclusion, every person must confront the challenges in life. That is the same way Emily and their mother experienced life. It was apparent that the duo managed to get something out of their lives. In the end, they managed to live a fulfilling life despite the challenges. Life needs support from others since an individual can’t make it alone. The characters failed to embrace the same, and that is the reason for the challenges that they faced in their lives. The existence of the generation mirror is something to understand and have a positive impact on. The society will always set stands. However, connecting with the heart and executing any plan with passion is imperative. That is the surest way to achieve success and remain relevant in any space.

Works Cited

Christian-Smith, Linda K. “In Different Voices: Morality and Femininity in Literature.” (1990): 41-462.

Rubin, Lois. “America and I: Short Stories by American Jewish Writers.” (1998): 9-160.



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