Describe the relationship between Elisa and Henry at the start of the story, citing examples from the text, and then again at the end of the story. Did their relationship change? How? If not, what might this suggest about Elisa and Henry’s marriage? Based upon my understanding of the reading, Henry and Elisa seemed to have a great relationship. Elisa is portrayed as a rather stern, strong minded, and exacting– to a point type of person. However, Edward appeared to be more submissive and jovial.
In essence, Elisa takes on a more masculine role, and she has a peculiar demeanor. ” In her tone and on her face there was a little smugness”(Steinbeck, 2011, p. 375). She wanted to know the business that “those” men had on the ranch. Her reactions to certain situations personified her as very aggressive and masculine. The author signifies evidence of this tone by the way he scripted her response: “Henry, who were those men you were talking to?! ” (Steinbeck, 2011, p. 375). She did not even give him a chance to tell her who they were. Why, sure, that’s what I came to tell you (Steinbeck, 2011, p. 375). At the end of the story, their relationship changed for the best. They actually grew closer despite the polar differences in their personalities. Edward gave Elisa more compliments. He even noticed that a suggestion of movie and dinner brought out the “feminine side” of his wife– something he had not seen much of. Earlier in the story, she was dress in a very manly hat that covered her eyes, a big corduroy apron, and heavy gardening gloves.
As time progressed, Elisa began letting her guard down and became softer, even as soft as the delicate chrysanthemums she nurtured daily. “He took one hand from the wheel and patted her knee. “I ought to take you in to dinner oftener. It would be good for both of us. We get so heavy out on the ranch”(Steinbeck, 2011, p. 375). . References Steinbeck, J. (2011). The Chrystanthimums. In D. L. Pike, & A. M. Acosta, Literature: A world of writing stories, poems, plays and essays [VitalSource Digital Version] (pp. 375-380). Boston, MA: Pearson Learning Solutions.