Tuesday, November 2, 2010

"How I Met My Husband" by Alice Munro

4. Is Edie a sympathetic character? How does her status as "the hired girl" affect the way you respond to her as a reader?

I would consider Edie to be a sympathetic character in this story. Because she was young and naive, it gave her an aspect of innocence that would not have been present otherwise. Also, the fact that she had to move away from her family in order to get a job and make money caused me to sympathize with her. It must have been difficult for her to be in an entirely new environment and be surrounded by unfamiliar people. Edie's status as "the hired girl" affected the way I responded to her after her interaction with Chris Watters because I took on the attitude that she was young and didn't know any better than the way she had acted. As many people do, I justified her mistake with the fact that she was inexperienced in relationships with men. I felt further sympathy for Edie when she allowed herself to believe that he would actually write her as he promised he would. Days passed, and then months, before she came to the realization that "No letter was ever going to come" (page 146). In a way, I felt like Mr. Watters used Edie and then left her behind just as he had left Alice Kelling before her.

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