The Revolt Of Mother
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In “The Revolt of вЂ?MotherвЂ™Ð²Ð‚Ñœ by Mary E. Wilkins-Freeman, Sarah Penn is a hardworking housewife who has had great regard for her husband and his wishes throughout there forty year married. Until one morning Sarah, who is referred to in the story as Mother, goes against her husband’s ambitions in hopes of having a better live. Taking place in the late 1800’s in rural America, the “Revolt” is a typical story of a woman’s rule as a wife and mother. Her husband Adoniram, who is referred to as Father, makes all the decisions for the family and does not wish for Mother to interfere with his decisions throughout the narration.

Initially, Mother starts by questioning Father about why and for what the men in the field are digging on there property? He simply ignores his wives questions and goes about harnessing his mare. Mother does not stop asking and stresses, “Look here, father, I want to know what them men are diggin’ over in the field for, an’ I’m goin’ to know.” (229) Father response by saying, “I wish you’d go into the house, mother, an’ tend to your own affairs.” (229) He is annoyed by her questions and keeps tending to his choirs wishing she would leave him be. Mother does not give up on the conversation and knowing she will not leave him alone, he simply says, “the men are digging a cellar for a new barn,” (229) and goes back to work. Mother is shocked by this and still quiz’s him “A barn? You ain’t goin’ to build a barn over there where we was goin’ to have a house, father?” (230) Father says nothing. The fact that he says nothing establishes that he does not respect his wife’s thoughts and feels her opinions are invalid.

Then Mother goes back into her house where she tells her daughter Nanny what her Father was building. After interrogating her son Sammy, she becomes aware that this plan for a new barn was set three months ago and that Father will be buying four new cows to reside there. Sammy then goes off the school. Mother is left with her daughter and the thoughts of the new barn. She begins to fix dinner while speaking with Nanny about what she desired the old house to be. Even though Mother is upset about her house conditions she tries not to complain. When Nanny ask “don’t you think it’s too bad father’s going to build that new barn, much as we need a decent house to live in?” (231) Mother answers, “You ain’t found out yet we’re women folks, Nanny Penn.” (231) She was referring to the old rule that the men are the head of household and women are there merely to cook, clean, and bare children. Nanny had not yet understood this age old relationship between men and women – where men ruled.

Later Father and Sammy arrived home for dinner. Father said grace and the family began to eat hastily. After dinner Sammy quickly ran off to school before his father could tell him to stay and help with choirs. Nanny left also to do some errands in town. Right before Father left to go back to work, Mother called after him saying she wanted him to sit down so she could see him for a moment. Her husband ever dreading this conversation reluctantly sat down. She began her appeal about the new barn verses a new house. Saying that he promised forty years ago to build her a better house right where the new barn is being built, “Father, I want to know if you think it’s right. You’re lodgin’ your dumb beasts better than you are your

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New Barn And Daughter Nanny. (April 9, 2021). Retrieved from