Roosevelt had just been reelected president. By this action, Elisa is unconsciously withdrawing back to her feminine side and cleansing herself "of the masculine situation by turning to the feminine world in which she best functions" Sweet Critic William Soskin called the story "weak," and another, named Harry Hansen, said it was "a bit too abrupt at the beginning, but with a good ending.
When her husband, Henry, comments about her "strong" chrysanthemum crop, Elisa is pleased by the manliness the word implies, but her husband reminds her of her femininity by offering her an evening on the town. She gives the tinker the seedling and retreats indoors to find him some pots to mend.
He pleads that Elisa is "playing some kind of a game. He talks about her "changing" but is clueless as to what this means. Both are too absorbed in keeping up appearances with each other to engage in honest dialogue. She allows her emotions to control her and lets go of her masculine side, freeing her central feminine sexuality, according to Sweet Her home has the masculine qualities of being "hard-swept" and "hard-polished" Steinbeck She was one of the few women in her time to gain equality in a male-dominated society.
Throughout the story, Elisa suffers a regression from the masculine role she sees as equality to the feminine role she sees as submissive. According to Sweet, he is to Elisa what the meat buyers were to Henry She is possibly afraid that he will view her less positively if she admits that she would like to accompany him to the fights.
Now, Henry is simply perplexed that Elisa has suddenly shown an interest in prize fighting.
Because she has gone back to her feminine role, according to Renner, "she remains a pitiable victim of male domination and female disadvantage" Henry immediately notices the transformation and compliments her with the feminine "nice" instead of "strong," which is masculine. This frustration is evident when Elisa is first introduced.
She wants to know whether the fighters hurt each other very much and whether women attend the fights. Steinbeck was an immensely popular writer, but critics and scholars were not similarly enthused. Steinbeck was born in in Salinas, and much of his work is set in and inspired by his childhood hometown and its surroundings.
Nevertheless, it is he who gets to ride about the country, living an adventurous life that he believes is unfit for women. Most newspapers and periodicals responded to his award negatively or indifferently. Elisa realizes her hopes for equality are nothing but a dream because she has been betrayed by her basic nature and by men.
Elisa prefers "strong," but the meaning of it has changed from "masculine equal" to "feminine overlord" Sweet And back when Steinbeck wrote and even today women were still less free than men. Her frustration with the male-dominated society causes her to let go of her dreams for liberation and to become what society expects her to be--a passive woman.
While her husband takes his bath, she lays out his clothes on the bed and deposits his polished shoes next to the bed.
Her dreams of feminine equality are so broken that she can never go back to being what she once was; thus "she must endure her typical social role" Sweet A woman, spending the afternoon in her garden, is visited by a stranger and finds herself both awakened and disheartened by what happens.
As such, although Elisa knows what the tinker is saying when he inquires about the chrysanthemums, the reader is not told that he is insincere, that he is just using her. After the tinker leaves, Elisa goes indoors to bathe.
While Henry may love Elisa, he has little understanding of her needs as a woman.
Some questioned the decision to award him the Nobel Prize in Literature in By doing these purely feminine things, according to Marcus, she hopes to accentuate her role as a woman She scrubs herself "until her skin was scratched and red" Steinbeck According to Elisa, he may not even match her skill as a tinker.
The next situation involves the tinker. His simple sentences and understated vocabulary are packed with meaning, but they refuse to whack you over the head with it. Henry warms the car up to go into town while Elisa gets herself ready.
Even when Henry pays Elisa a compliment, he is inept and inadequate. He compares her flowers to a "quick puff of colored smoke" Steinbeck Elisa is smart, energetic, attractive, and ambitious, but all these attributes go to waste.
Whatever information she gets about the management of the ranch comes indirectly from Henry, who speaks only in vague, condescending terms instead of treating his wife as an equal partner. America and Its People:“The Chrysanthemums” has variously been praised as a masterpiece, one of the finest stories in American literature and a story that “seems almost perfect in form and style.” In a realistic style rich with symbolism, John Steinbeck captures a sense of the ’s in the United States in his depiction of the relationship between Elisa Allen and her husband, Henry.
“The Chrysanthemums” is an understated but pointed critique of a society that has no place for intelligent women. Elisa is smart, energetic, attractive, and ambitious, but all these attributes go to waste.
Although the two key men in the story are less interesting and talented than she, their lives are far. - A Woman Bound by Society in John Steinbeck's "The Chrysanthemums" When John Steinbeck's short story "The Chrysanthemums" first appeared in the October edition of Harper's Magazine (Osborne ), Franklin D.
Roosevelt had just been reelected president. in John Steinbeck's Works Shu fang Liang relationship with men. while their symbolic or ritualistic function was nothing but \'the service of the artist and the service of man." William Faulkner, on Women: The lmplicable Disparity between Women in Steinbeck's Life and Those.
The Chrysanthemums study guide contains a biography of John Steinbeck, literature essays, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis.
About The Chrysanthemums The Chrysanthemums Summary. In the essay by John Steinbeck called The Chrysanthemums, he was able to give a glimpse to what it was like being a woman and living in a male dominated world. The main character Elisa is an interesting, intelligent, and passionate woman who lives an unsatisfying, and under stimulated life.Download