The Boarding House

~ Summary ~

This is a story of love and adolescence. The central character of the story is Mrs. Mooney. She is a strong, determined and a reserved woman. She represents the awakening woman of 20th century who crosses the boundaries made by the male dominating societies. She is a representation of a new woman who never tolerates the domination and exploitation of males. In the story, the writer focuses on her relationship with her daughter. She is shown here as a confident and complete mother as she knows to deal with different kinds of relationships.

Mrs. Mooney was a daughter of a butcher. Her husband worked for her father. When he father died, her husband turned to be a drunkard. He misused the money by drinking a lot and misbehaved with her in presence of customers because of which her shop was about to collapse. One night, her husband entered with a knife in a drunken frenzy to attack her and she had to sleep in her neighbor’s house. Next morning, she went to church and got divorced from him. She began to live separately. She was independent to think about her life and her children’s. She was concerned about the future of her children. Thinking that her shop wouldn’t help her sustain, she sold it and opened a boarding house. Her daughter, Miss Polly began to work in an office but she couldn’t continue her job due to the frequent disturbance from her father. Then Mrs. Mooney intentionally made her work in her boarding house where Miss Polly fell in love with Mr. Doran.

Many people in the house began to talk about their relationship but Mrs. Mooney didn’t stop her daughter having the relationship with M. Doran. She waited for the right time. When she saw little strange manners in her daughter, she thought it was the right time to talk. She called Mr. Doran in her house for dinner. She thought that no any compensation would pay for the enjoyment he had with her relationship. Mrs. Polly was a 19 year old girl who was beautiful and inexperienced whereas Mr. Doran was a middle aged man and experienced as well. So Mrs. Mooney was not ready to excuse him at any cost thinking that money wasn’t enough. But Mr. Doran had a good excuse for not accepting Miss Polly. He said his father wouldn’t accept their marriage and he himself viewed that Miss Polly couldn’t speak English well, she was not highly educated and her family background wasn’t good. But Mrs. Mooney didn’t let him go without a payment. In the last of the story, she called her daughter saying that Mr. Doran wanted to speak to her.

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