From Cool and Classy to Trashy and Vain

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Intro to Lit Study-- EL150

Fitzgerald, Bernice Bobs Her Hair

"There's some excuse for an ugly girl whining. If I'd been irretrievably ugly I'd never have forgiven my parents for bringing me into the world. But you're starting life without any handicap--" Marjorie's little fist clinched. "If you expect me to weep with you you'll be disappointed. Go or stay, just as you like."

Marjorie, to me, is the kind of woman who put looks above and beyond everything imaginable. This answers Dr. Jerz's question on where do Marjorie get her strength. This seducteress based her well being on how many men can she court. Majorie even takes Bernice under her wing as a "black widow" (without death) but I could sense some resistance with her. She just wanted to be herself through out this story. Marjorie's thoughts on life isn't exactly foriegn to her time frame or this one. Basically, society is teaching us to always rely on the outer beauty of things even though the inside is completely rotten. Vanity can't be the solution to solving problems, so why do so many people rely on it?

4 Comments

Kevin I agree with you 100%!!
Marjorie is just very shallow and think beauty will get you every where in life. Society can be a bad thing, for example womens views on beauty and being skinny. Those women believe being beautiful and skinny will make men and others love them. However, half the time, those women are stuck on their self.
I think that Bernice should have just stuck to who she was, and love herself for who she is.

I see where both of you were coming from. And to be personally honest, Fitzgerald actually made me as a reader feel more attracted to Bernice that to Marjorie in the first place. So when Bernice finally stoops to Marjories level and let's herself get caught up in foolish adolescent games with her cousin, I kind of lose respect for her in a way and now she's not standing up for who she wants to be. Self-confidence is a major issue in this story and I really liked it.

I agree, there is a point in the story when one of the boys at the dance said something like he would have liked her, but she seemed to have changed overnight and now she's so much like her cousin Marjorie. Bernice is extreemely self-confidant, and probably will stay that way for the rest of her life.

I think that Marjorie was just jealous of the class that Bernice had and the fact that she didn't have to go to extremes to get attention. It took Bernice a few minutes whereas it took Marjorie years to build true confidence. Everyone should have it because everyone deserves a chance to be known and liked.