Categories Guide

Often asked: What is the main conflict in I stand here ironing?

“I Stand Here Ironing” contains both, but the main conflict is internal. The narrator is struggling with herself. She is trying to come to grips with what she sees as her failure as a mother.

What are two themes of I Stand Here Ironing?

I Stand Here Ironing Themes

  • Poverty, Labor, and Domestic Life.
  • Female Identity.
  • Time.
  • Obedience vs.
  • Responsibility and Guilt.

What is the climax in I Stand Here Ironing?

At the story’s climax, Emily herself enters the room where the narrator has been ironing and reflecting throughout the story. Emily is in a cheerful, talkative mood, and the narrator suddenly wonders why anyone would worry about her.

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What is the main idea of I Stand Here Ironing?

The central idea of “I Stand Here Ironing” is the fragility of the mother-daughter relationship within the context of single motherhood. The narrator highlights the central idea through a stream-of-consciousness, first-person narrative.

What is the plot of the story I Stand Here Ironing?

Emily spends a few months at a charity-run convalescent home for children. After changing her son Ronnie’s diaper, the narrator goes back to her ironing and continues her musings. During World War II, Emily helps her mother care for a growing household and has trouble keeping up with her studies.

What obstacles did the mother face while raising her daughter I Stand Here Ironing?

During the Depression years, many single, working mothers struggled with a lack of social services and financial support. “I Stand Here Ironing” desanctified motherhood, giving voice to the self-doubt and ambivalence that some mothers felt when faced with the challenges of child-rearing.

What does the title of Tillie Olsen story I Stand Here Ironing?

The Iron. The iron represents the chores and responsibilities that prevented the narrator from engaging with Emily’s life more profoundly. As the story’s title suggests, the narrator is constantly embroiled in the duties she must perform to effectively care for her family.

What happens to Emily at the end of I Stand Here Ironing?

Eventually, the narrator sent Emily to live with her father’s family. Emily returned to her mother’s care when she was two, but the narrator worked long hours and placed Emily in day care.

How does Olsen reveal a message about motherhood with the text I Stand Here Ironing?

In “I Stand Here Ironing,” Olsen suggests that the role of selfless mother that society expects women to embrace is actually an obstacle to any kind of successful self-discovery. Rather than help women achieve self-actualization, motherhood actually strands women in lives laden with toil and excessive responsibility.

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What was Emily like as a baby how is she indirectly characterized?

As a child, Emily is low maintenance: she never complains or asks for anything. She’s generally quiet, and if she does want to express something, like her desire to see her mother, she does so indirectly.

Does Emily’s mother feel she failed?

So, like many parents, Emily’s mother feels she may have failed to give Emily everything she wanted, but Emily’s independence assures her that Emily got what she needed.

Why does the mother send Emily away the first time in I Stand Here Ironing?

Her mother worked for the first six years of Emily’s life; Emily was sent away to live with relatives because her mother could not work and take care of her at the same time; Emily was sent away to a convalescent home where she was deeply unhappy.

Was the mother in I Stand Here Ironing a good mother?

“I Stand Here Ironing” by Tillie Olsen shows us a mother who is struggling through her own life and does not pay any attention to her daughter. The mother in this story happens to be the narrator, and we get the indication that she isn’t a very good mother. To start, she was very young when she first had Emily.

What is the relationship between Emily and her mother in I Stand Here Ironing?

In the story, “I Stand Here Ironing,” Tillie Olsen portrays the life and regret of a young single mother struggling to raise her daughter Emily. Olsen points out through uncontrollable circumstances in society, Emily’s mother is forced to become a working-class mother who must hold down a job and care for her child.

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Who is the protagonist of I Stand Here Ironing?

Emily is the central character of “I Stand Here Ironing,” the subject of a fractured portrait that emerges from the narrator’s memories of the past.

Why did Emily have to be separated from her mother?

Emily’s mother failed, through no fault of her own, to provide Emily with the bonding, attention, and support babies and children need. They were separated for long periods of time, and Emily finally stopped allowing her mother to comfort her. The mother wasn’t there to tell Emily she was pretty when she

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