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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Dorothy Parker’s games of girls and women : a thematic study of victims and manipulators in selected… Goldberg, Gail Ann 1976

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DOROTHY PARKER'S GAMES OF GIRLS AND WOMEN: A THEMATIC STUDY OF VICTIMS AND MANIPULATORS IN SELECTED SHORT STORIES BY DOROTHY PARKER with a checklist of Dorothy Parker's prose, exclusive of reviews by GAIL ANN GOLDBERG B.A., McGill University, A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS i n THE .FACULTY OF. GRADUATEJiSTUDOiES" DEPARTMENT OF ENGLISH We accept t h i s thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA J u n e , 1976 c) G a i l Ann G o l d b e r g ^ 1976 In presenting th i s thes is in pa r t i a l fu l f i lment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the Un ivers i ty of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree that the L ibrary shal l make it f ree ly ava i l ab le for reference and study. I fur ther agree that permission for extensive copying of th i s thesis for scho lar ly purposes may be granted by the Head of my Department or by his representat ives. It is understood that copying or pub l i ca t ion of th i s thes is fo r f i nanc ia l gain sha l l not be allowed without my writ ten permission. Department of English The Univers i ty of B r i t i s h Columbia 2075 Wesbrook Place Vancouver, Canada V6T 1W5 Date 23 March 1976 A b s t r a c t The r e l a t i o n s h i p between v i c t i m s and m a n i p u l a t o r s i s a b a s i c theme i n the works o f Dorothy P a r k e r . R e j e c t e d by her stepmother as a c h i l d , she grew up i n c a p a b l e of a c c e p t i n g l o v e or a f f e c t i o n , and spent h e r l i f e a l i e n a t i n g o t h e r s on the o f f - c h a n c e t h a t they t o o might h u r t h e r i f she a l l o w e d h e r s e l f t o c a r e about them. T h i s d e f e n s i v e a t t i t u d e l e d her t o v i e w t h e w o r l d t h r o u g h a t w o - d i m e n s i o n a l l e n s : one e i t h e r " d i d " or was "done t o " ; one was e i t h e r a v i c t i m o r a m a n i p u l a t o r . P a r k e r ' s s h o r t s t o r i e s f a l l i n t o two g e n e r a l c a t e g o r i e s . Some d e a l s p e c i f i c a l l y w i t h l o v e r s , and the r e s t examine more g e n e r a l , n o n s e x u a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s . The second group appeared t o o f f e r more depth and v a r i e t y , and so a l l h e r p r o s e was examined w i t h t h i s a s p e c t i n mind. Because h e r p o e t r y i s concerned a l m o s t e n t i r e l y w i t h l o v e , i t seemed too l i m i t e d t o be e x p l o r e d i n d e t a i l i n a b r o a d t h e m a t i c s t u d y , such as t h i s had become. The f a c t t h a t the p l a y s were a l l c o - a u t h o r e d e x c l u d e d them as w e l l , a l t h o u g h L a d i e s  o f t h e C o r r i d o r does d e a l w i t h the v i c t i m - m a n i p u l a t o r theme a t some l e n g t h . The r e a d i n g was based upon a c h e c k l i s t w h i c h I b e l i e v e t o be a complete l i s t i n g o f Dorothy P a r k e r ' s n o n - c r i t i c a l p r o s e . I t was c o m p i l e d from March 1974 u n t i l September 1975, and i s based p r i m a r i l y upon the Readers' Guide t o P e r i o d i c a l  L i t e r a t u r e , a l t h o u g h many o t h e r g u i d e s and i n d i c e s were i i c o n s u l t e d as w e l l . C r o s s - r e f e r e n c e s and chance a l l u s i o n s were a l s o i m p o r t a n t s o u r c e s o f i n f o r m a t i o n , even though many o f the l e a d s s u g g e s t e d by John K e a t s ' book p r o v e d t o be f a l s e . Once t h e s t o r i e s were r e a d , c l a s s i f i e d , and s e l e c t e d , they were grouped i n t o f o u r c a t e g o r i e s - - m a n i p u l a t o r - o r i e n t e d r e l a t i o n s h i p s , v i c t i m l e s s m a n i p u l a t o r c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n s , v i c t i m - o r i e n t e d r e l a t i o n s h i p s , and p o r t r a i t s o f m a n i p u l a t o r -l e s s ( p e r se) v i c t i m s - - a n d d i s c u s s e d . T h i s s t r u c t u r e has c e r t a i n i n h e r e n t f l a w s , b u t i t does p o i n t up t h e v a r i o u s b a l a n c e s s t r u c k between comic t e c h n i q u e and s e r i o u s i n t e n t , an i m p o r t a n t concept i n t h e s e s t o r i e s . I t a l s o gave a c e r t a i n framework to the e x a m i n a t i o n , h e l p i n g t o keep i t from e i t h e r becoming a narrow " g r o c e r y l i s t " o f d e s c r i p t i v e c r i t i c i s m , o r a s p r a w l i n g monster g a l l o p i n g o f f i n a l l d i r e c t i o n s a t once (a v e r y r e a l p roblem i n an e x a m i n a t i o n of such an u n s c h o l a r l y , u n s t u d i e d w r i t e r ) . The main c o n c l u s i o n t o be drawn from such a stu d y seems to be t h a t Dorothy P a r k e r m e r i t s more s e r i o u s l i t e r a r y a t t e n t i o n . Her r e p u t a t i o n as a w i t has p r e c e d e d h e r - - n o t always p o s i t i v e l y , as she h e r s e l f r e a l i s e d - - a n d has perhaps p r e j u d i c e d us a g a i n s t h e r genuine a r t i s t i c w o r t h . "Dorothy P a r k e r : wasn't she t h e one who s a i d . . .?" Whether she was or not s h o u l d be i m m a t e r i a l . She w i s h e d most t o be remembered f o r h e r s h o r t s t o r i e s ; t he l e a s t we can do i s re a d them. I f a s t u d y of t h i s n a t u r e can make them more i n t e r e s t i n g o r more a c c e s s i b l e , i t has s e r v e d i t s p urpose. i i i T a b l e o f Contents I n t r o d u c t i o n . 1 Chapter I . 14 S e c t i o n 1 14 S e c t i o n 2 , .44 C h a p t e r I I 56 S e c t i o n 1 57 S e c t i o n 2 . . . 65 C o n c l u s i o n 86 C h e c k l i s t .• . .91' B i b l i o g r a p h y ; 96 DOROTHY PARKER'S GAMES OF GIRLS AND WOMEN: A THEMATIC STUDY OF VICTIMS AND MANIPULATORS IN SELECTED SHORT. STORIES BY DOROTHY PARKER w i t h a c h e c k l i s t o f D orothy P a r k e r ' s p r o s e , e x c l u s i v e o f r e v i e w s One e v e n i n g Mrs. P a r k e r a r r i v e d l a t e a t a p a r t y g i v e n by H e r b e r t Bayard Swope, and o b s e r v e d th e g u e s t s engaged i n some s o r t of group amusement. Swope e x p l a i n e d t h a t t h e g u e s t s were " d u c k i n g f o r a p p l e s , " and Mrs. P a r k e r a f f e c t e d , "There, but f o r a t y p o g r a p h i c a l e r r o r , i s t h e s t o r y o f my l i f e . " 1 T h i s anecdote might be c o n s i d e r e d q u i t e amusing, were i t n o t f o r the f a c t t h a t Dorothy P a r k e r p r o b a b l y b e l i e v e d her remark t o be t r u e . She had a m i s e r a b l e c h i l d h o o d , complete w i t h a f a i r y - t a l e e v i l stepmother, and she spent most of her l i f e t r y i n g t o escape i t . As E l i z a b e t h Janeway n o t e s i n her p e r c e p t i v e a r t i c l e i n t h e S a t u r d a y Review, " F a m i l i e s can be l e f t b e h i n d , but D orothy P a r k e r c a r r i e d D o r o t h y R o t h s c h i l d w i t h her f o r s e v e n t y y e a r s , and one g e t s the f e e l i n g t h a t she l o a t h e d the poor c r e a t u r e as 2 d e e p l y as her stepmother had." The r e f u s a l t o acknowledge any p o s i t i v e a s p e c t s i n h e r s e l f e v e n t u a l l y r e n d e r e d P a r k e r i n c a p a b l e o f s e e i n g a n y t h i n g good i n l i f e , and much of her e x i s t e n c e was spent i n t r y i n g d e s p e r a t e l y t o escape from any 1 2 p o s s i b i l i t y o f h a p p i n e s s . S i n c e n o t h i n g good had ever happened t o l i t t l e D o t t i e R o t h s c h i l d , i t f o l l o w e d t h a t whatever happened t o Mrs. D o r o t h y P a r k e r must be bad as w e l l . Her l i f e was a chaos of p e r p e t u a l , almost t o t a l , i n s e c u r i t y , and t h i s i n t u r n l e d t o her o f t e n h y p o c r i t i c a l s o c i a l b e h a v i o u r . She s t r o v e t o a l i e n a t e people, b e f o r e t h e y c o u l d a l i e n a t e her,, u n a b l e t o r e a l i z e t h a t many of t h e s e p e o p l e , g i v e n h a l f a chance, might have become her good f r i e n d s . Janeway c o n t i n u e s : Any man i n her l i f e wh'o made [the] m i s t a k e [of l o v i n g her] brought h i m s e l f down t o t h e l e v e l o f d e s p i s e d l i t t l e . D o r o t h y R o t h s c h i l d , a c r e a t u r e who was unworthy of l o v e . So, h a t i n g her and c o n f i n e d w i t h i n h e r , D o r o t h y P a r k e r i n s u l t e d the men who l o v e d h e r , f o r t h a t l o v e stamped them as t a s t e l e s s f o o l s . The ones she l o v e d were t h o s e :. who l i e d t o h e r , t o o k h e r money, made l o v e t o h e r , and m a r r i e d someone e l s e . My own guess i s t h a t more o f them l o v e d her t h a n she knew, f o r she must have f r i g h t e n e d many away. When t h a t happened she s u f f e r e d h o r r i b l y , and wrote about i t . - * L i l l i a n Heilman c a l l e d t h i s b e h a v i o u r "embrace-denounce," and t r i e d t o e x p l a i n i t when she d e s c r i b e d why D a s h i e l l Hammett r e f u s e d t o r e m a i n i n t h e same room w i t h P a r k e r : I t h i n k t h e game of embrace-denounce must have s t a r t e d when she found i t amused or shocked p e o p l e , because i n t i m e , when she found i t d i d n ' t amuse me, she seldom p l a y e d i t . But Hammett found i t downright, d i s t a s t e f u l and I gave up a l l e f f o r t s t o c o n v i n c e him t h a t i t was the k i n d o f p r o t e c t i o n sometimes neededoby t h o s e who a r e f r i g h t e n e d . I am no l o n g e r c e r t a i n t h a t I was r i g h t : f e a r now seems too s i m p l e . The game more p r o b a b l y came from a d e s i r e t o charm, t o be l o v e d , t o be admired; and such d e s i r e s b r o u g h t s e l f - c o n t e m p t 3 t h a t c o u l d o n l y be c o n s o l e d by b e h i n d - t h e - b a c k d e n u n c i a t i o n s of almost comic v i o l e n c e . 4-I n s p i t e o f her i n s e c u r i t y and s e l f - c o n t e m p t , however, P a r k e r knew t h a t she was somehow d i f f e r e n t , t h a t she was s p e c i a l - - t h a t she was an a r t i s t . Unable t o f i t i n t o t h e mold her s o c i e t y had c r e a t e d f o r h e r , f i n d i n g i t i m p o s s i b l e t o r e m a i n t r u e to h e r s e l f w h i l e f u l f i l l i n g t h e r o l e s her p a r t i c u l a r s o c i a l p o s i t i o n i n v o l v e d , she became "a woman caught i n a l i f e w h i c h she t u r n e d a g a i n s t h e r s e l f . " " ' Her h a t r e d was p a r a d o x i c a l i n t h a t she spent most of her l i f e d e s p e r a t e l y t r y i n g t o c o n v i n c e and r e c o n v i n c e h e r s e l f o f her i n f e r i o r i t y , i g n o r i n g r a t h e r t h a n d e v e l o p i n g t h a t a r t i s t i c a s p e c t o f her s e l f w h i c h was i n r e a l i t y b e t t e r and f i n e r t h a n most of what i t met. The d u a l i t y o f detached a r t i s t and s u f f e r i n g i n d i v i d u a l shows i t s e l f i n Dorothy P a r k e r ' s w r i t i n g . I n "Robert B e n c h l e y and D o r o t h y P a r k e r : Punch and Judy i n F o r m a l D r e s s , " W i l l i a m Shanahan r e f e r s t o her "sense o f comic elements i n e s s e n t i a l l y t r a g i c s i t u a t i o n s , " and t o her "sense o f t h e t r a g i c a l l y a b s u r d . " John K e a t s comments c o n t i n u a l l y on t h i s "double v i s i o n " i n You M i g h t as W e l l L i v e , and c i t e s i t as one o f the main r e a s o n s f o r t h e f a i l u r e o f t h e L a d i e s of t h e C o r r i d o r when he s t a t e s t h a t "Dorothy P a r k e r ' s double v i s i o n was a g a i n f a t a l l y a t work; w i t h i n t h e e p i s o d e s , comedy s a t o d d l y and d i s t r a c t i n g l y i n t h e l a p o f t r a g e d y . " ^ W i l l i a m Somerset Maugham, i n the o r i g i n a l i n t r o d u c t i o n t o The P o r t a b l e D orothy  P a r k e r , n o t e s t h a t "Perhaps what g i v e s her w r i t i n g i t s 4 p e c u l i a r tang i s her g i f t f o r s e e i n g something t o l a u g h a t i n t h e b i t t e r e s t t r a g e d i e s o f t h e human a n i m a l . " ^ Andre M a u r o i s ' Revue de P a r i s comment on t h i s a s p e c t o f P a r k e r ' s w r i t i n g i s one o f t h e most i n t e r e s t i n g ; he uses i t as the b a s i s o f her c l a s s i f i c a t i o n as a h u m o u r i s t : " ' J e s u i s un h u m o r i s t e , m'a d i t un j o u r P i r a n d e l l o , p a r c e que j ' a p e r c o i s en meme temps l e c&te comique e t l e c6te' t r a g i q u e de l a v i e . ' S i c e t t e d e f i n i t i o n e s t e x a c t e , D o r o t h y P a r k e r e s t une h u m o r i s t e , c a r e l l e p e i n t a l a f o i s 9 l e s a s p e c t s d o u l o u r e u x e t l e s .aspects b o u f f o n s de 1'amour." I t f o l l o w s , t h e n , t h a t s a t i r e would become Dor o t h y P a r k e r ' s n a t u r a l r e a l m . I t e n a b l e d her t o b e r a t e what, she h a t e d i n a s o c i a l l y a c c e p t a b l e manner, and much of what she h a t e d she r e l a t e d d i r e c t l y t o h e r s e l f . Donald'JOgden S t e w a r t , a t one t i m e a c l o s e f r i e n d , n o t e d t h a t "She was so f u l l o f p r e t e n s e h e r s e l f t h a t she c o u l d r e c o g n i z e the t h i n g . . . . That doesn't mean she d i d not h a t e sham on a h i g h l e v e l , but t h a t she c o u l d r e c o g n i z e p r e t e n s e because t h a t was p a r t of her makeup. She would g e t g l i m p s e s of h e r s e l f d o i n g t h i n g s t h a t would make her h a t e h e r s e l f f o r t h a t s o r t 'of pretense."''"^ Mark van Doren comments on her s a t i r e and i t s v a l u e a t g r e a t e r l e n g t h , i f on a l e s s p e r s o n a l b a s i s , i n The E n g l i s h J o u r n a l : Her c o n c e n t r a t e d l o a t h i n g f o r t h e smug a d u l t e r e r , t h e s e l f i s h o l d man, t h e d o m i n a t i n g mother, the s o c i e t y woman who p a t r o n i z e s Negro a r t i s t s , t h e tamely f r i g i d w i f e , and t h e h e a r t l e s s l y c u r i o u s f r i e n d by t h e p r i v a t e s i c k - b e d - - t h i s l o a t h i n g i s g i v e n f u l l and b r i l l i a n t e x p r e s s i o n i n "Mr. D u r a n t , " "The W o n d e r f u l ' O l d Gentleman," " L i t t l e C u r t i s , " 5 "Arrangement i n B l a c k and W h i t e , " "Too Bad," and "Lady w i t h a Lamp," r e s p e c t i v e l y . Such s t o r i e s , by t e a c h i n g us how t o h a t e t h e v i c e s w h i c h a r e r e a l l y e v i l , t h e v i c e s o f h y p o c r i s y and c o l d n e s s , have a s a l u t a r y , a c l e a n s i n g power; and I s u s p e c t t h a t Mrs. P a r k e r i s nowhere more v a l u a b l e t h a n '., she i s i n t h e s e contemptuous p a g e s . H Dorothy P a r k e r ' s too-keen i n s i g h t i n t o h e r own p r e p o s -t e r o u s b e h a v i o u r and t h a t o f many o f her c o n t e m p o r a r i e s k n i f e s t h r o u g h h e r work, c a r v i n g our r e a c t i o n s as d e f t l y as i t does th e u n f o r t u n a t e f i g u r e under a t t a c k . The women who appear i n her s h o r t s t o r i e s a r e a l l a c c e p t a b l e s o c i a l types--some a r e even c o n s i d e r e d by t h e i r p e e r s t o approach epitome--but e v e r y one i s r e j e c t e d i n the end. Sometimes t h e d i s m i s s a l i s h i l a r i o u s and s a t i r i c a l , as i n "From the D i a r y o f a New Y o r k Lady"; o f t e n i t i s more s u b t l e and p a i n f u l , as i n the s e m i - a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l " B i g B l o n d e . " I t i s , however, i n e v i t a b l e . P a r k e r d e a l s w i t h l o s e r s , and even her most a t t r a c t i v e c h a r a c t e r s have some t r a i t w h i ch, i n -'.spitei'^-of t h e i r a p p a r e n t l y s e c u r e p o s i t i o n s , dddms them to e v e n t u a l f a i l u r e " i n t h e r e a d e r ' s #y'6-sV The a u t h o r c o n s i d e r e d h e r s e l f a f a i l u r e and t r a c e s f o r her r e a d e r s o t h e r f a i l u r e s , making c e r t a i n t h a t t h e y see .themselves i n t h e s e c h a r a c t e r s as t h e y r e j e c t them. She p r o j e c t s a w o r l d i n w h i c h t h e r e i s no w i n n i n g , o n l y c o p i n g ; a w o r l d whose i n h a b i t a n t s can be j u d g e d o n l y by t h e manner i n w h i c h t h e y d e c e i v e t h e m s e l v e s , t h e l e n g t h o f time f o r w h i c h and t h e l e v e l s a t w h i c h t h e y a r e a b l e t o m a i n t a i n t h e i r d e c e p t i o n . Janeway comments: [The s t o r i e s ] ' d i s t u r b one by b e i n g so f u l l o f 6 contempt: n o t j u s t anger a g a i n s t a p h i l i s t i n e w o r l d t h a t c l o s e s i t s eyes t o f r e s h n e s s and j o y , but l o a t h i n g f o r t h e i n h a b i t a n t s o f t h a t w o r l d . And t h i s i n i t s e l f does away w i t h t h e f r e s h n e s s , j o y , and openness she seems t o be p r a i s i n g . No one i n her s t o r i e s r e a l l y has a chance t o g e t out o f t h e t r a p . The d i c e a r e l o a d e d and the deck i s s t a c k e d . T h i s i s more th a n a r e f u s a l t o l o o k f o r happy e n d i n g s ; i t ' s an i n s i s t e n c e t h a t h a p p i n e s s doesn't e x i s t , a commitment t o making sure t h a t i t n e v e r will.-^-2 I n one way, t h e n , Dorothy P a r k e r ' s f i c t i o n a l w o r l d might be d e s c r i b e d as b e i n g p e o p l e d by two main c h a r a c t e r t y p e s : v i c t i m s and m a n i p u l a t o r s . Most p e o p l e a r e t h e v i c t i m s o f o t h e r s , of chance, or of t h e m s e l v e s ; the m a n i p u l a t o r s a r e t h o s e who have l e a r n e d t o cope. T h i s s t u d y i s an e x a m i n a t i o n o f t h e two groups. The r e l a t i o n s h i p between v i c t i m s and m a n i p u l a t o r s may not be t h e most i n t e r e s t i n g o r the most a c c e s i b l e a s p e c t o f the P a r k e r cannon, but i t i s t h e most b a s i c . Grounded i n the i n d i v i d u a l ' s i n a b i l i t y t o r espond t r u t h f u l l y and m e a n i n g f u l l y t o p e o p l e on most l e v e l s , t h e a u t h o r ' s d e v e l o p i n g a r t i s t i c p e r c e p t i o n s c o n c e i v e d of l i f e as an e x e r c i s e whose o n l y p o s s i b l e ^ r u l e - o f - t h u m b was "Do u n t o o t h e r s b e f o r e t h e y have a chance t o do unto you." I n t h e p o e t r y and t h e s t o r i e s c o n c e r n i n g l o v e r s i t seems t o be t a k e n f o r g r a n t e d t h a t t h e men a r e t h e v i c t i m i z e r s , making t h e s e s t o r i e s n ot as t h e m a t i -c a l l y i n t e r e s t i n g , and t h e r e f o r e not under c o n s i d e r a t i o n h e r e , but P a r k e r and her c o n t e m p o r a r i e s excused t h i s b e h a v i o u r a t t h e same time as t h e y b e w a i l e d i t : " G e n e r a l Review o f t h e Sex S i t u a t i o n " Koman wants monogamy,:, Mari rdeiisg'n*f-s-^i'#xis6:v"e'lty. 7 Love i s woman's moon and sun; Man has o t h e r forms of f u n . Woman l i v e s b ut i n her l o r d ; Count t o ten,, and man i s bored. W i t h t h i s t h e g i s t and sum o f i t , What e a r t h l y good can come o f i t ? (p. 115) " U n f o r t u n a t e C o i n c i d e n c e " By t h e time you swear you're h i s , S h i v e r i n g and s i g h i n g , And he vows h i s p a s s i o n i s I n f i n i t e , u n d y i n g - -Lady, make a n o t e o f t h i s : One o f you i s l y i n g . (p. 96) "Comment" Oh, l i f e i s a g l o r i o u s c y c l e of song, A medley o f extemporanea; And l o v e i s a t h i n g t h a t can never go wrong; And I am M a r i e o f Roumania. ( i b i d . ) ' : i:;:"Two"-Volume' Nove 1'' The sun's gone dim, and The moon's t u r n e d b l a c k ; F o r I l o v e d him, and He d i d n ' t l o v e back. (p. 239) "News Item" Men seldom make passes A t g i r l s who wear g l a s s e s . (p. 109) "Song o f One of the G i r l s " Here i n my h e a r t I am H e l e n ; I'm A s p a s i a and Hero, a t l e a s t . I'm J u d i t h , and J a e l , and Madame de S t a ^ l ; I'm Salome, moon o f the E a s t . Here i n my s o u l I am Sappho; Lady H a m i l t o n am I , as w e l l . I n me Recamier v i e s w i t h K i t t y O'Shea, W i t h Dido, and Eve, and poor N e l l . I'm one, o f t h e . g l a m o r o u s s l a d d e s s A t whose b e c k o n i n g h i s t o r y shook. But you a r e a man, and see o n l y my pan, So I s t a y a t home w i t h a book. ( i b i d . ) The a c c e p t a n c e o r r e j e c t i o n o f such s t a n d a r d s today i s no t a t i s s u e h e r e : the q u e s t i o n i s one o f p r o c e s s . By examining the v a r i o u s v i c t i m s and m a n i p u l a t o r s , and t h e 8 r e l a t i o n s h i p s t h e y e n t e r i n t o , we as. r e a d e r s can l e a r n more about how and why we and o t h e r s a c t as we do, and we can become b e t t e r , more o b j e c t i v e j u d g e s o f our b e h a v i o u r . S e e i n g and r e j e c t i n g t h e a c t i o n s o f an u n a t t r a c t i v e c h a r a c t e r , t h e n r e a l i s i n g t h a t we have o f t e n responded t o t h e same s i t u a t i o n i n t h e same vray, we can t a k e s t e p s t o change our conduct t o something more a c c e p t a b l e t o b o t h our s o c i e t y and t o o u r s e l v e s . I f we sc h e m a t i z e t h e s t o r i e s t o be d i s c u s s e d , we n o t i c e t h e emergence o f a c u r i o u s i n t e r n a l b a l a n c e . The f i r s t s e c t i o n of Chapters I and I I d e t a i l s v a r i o u s m a n i p u l a t o r -v i c t i m r e l a t i o n s h i p s , t h e p r o d u c t ' o f i s o l a t e d , o f t e n t h o u g h t l e s s a c t s . The second s e c t i o n more c l o s e l y d e s c r i b e s t h e i n d i v i d u a l s o r c h a r a c t e r t y p e s i n v o l v e d i n t h e s e r e l a t i o n s h i p s . One i s l e f t w i t h a sense o f f a t a l i n e v i t a b i l i t y a f t e r r e a d i n g t h e s t o r i e s c o m p r i s i n g t h i s s e c t i o n : t h e c h a r a c t e r s have a l l e x p e r i e n c e d t h e i r s i t u a t i o n s b e f o r e , and whether t h e y r e a l i s e i t or n o t , t h e r e a d e r f e e l s c e r t a i n t h a t they w i l l a g a i n . Chapter I , S e c t i o n 1 Mrs. W h i t t a k e r •Mr. Durant Mrs. H a z e l t o n M a n i p u l a t o r Mrs. L a n i e r Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e The C r u g e r s Mrs. Ewing Mrs. Matson V i c t i m Gwennie Mrs. C h r i s t i e M i s s W i l m a r t h B i g L a n n i e C u r t i s The B a i n s Rose; h i s f a m i l y M i s s N i c h o l l Chapter I , S e c t i o n 2 Woman i n " D i a r y " Woman i n "Arrangement Mrs. C a r r i n g t o n , Mrs. ti Crane 9 " S o l d i e r s " p e r s o n a C h a p t e r I I , S e c t i o n 1 Young Woman Young Woman Lady P e t e r L i l a Mona Chapter I I , S e c t i o n 2 Young Woman Mr. Wheelock The Weldons Mrs. A l l e n Mrs. Tennant H a z e l Morse I n C hapter I , S e c t i o n 1, w h i c h d e a l s w i t h t he r e l a t i o n s between s p e c i f i c v i c t i m s and m a n i p u l a t o r s , and Chapter I I , S e c t i o n 2, w h i c h f o c u s e s on t h e c h a r a c t e r o f t h e v i c t i m , t h e s t o r i e s a l l t e n d t o be low-key. I n Chapter I , S e c t i o n 2, however, M i s r u l e r e i g n s when t h e scheming l a d i e s go o f f on t h e i r own, j u s t as i t does i n Chapter I I , S e c t i o n 1, when the anonymous m a n i p u l a t o r r ubs her hands i n g l e e as she stands over her h a p l e s s v i c t i m . These nameless m a n i p u l a t o r s may be d e s p i c a b l e , but the y a r e a f a s c i n a t i n g group. The v i c t i m s , on t h e o t h e r hand, would demand more s e r i o u s c o n s i d e r a t i o n , whether o r n o t they manage t o h o l d our a t t e n t i o n l o n g enough f o r t h i s c o n s i d e r a t i o n t o dev e l o p . Q u e s t i o n s of b a l a n c e a r e d e l i c a t e ones, and even Dorothy P a r k e r sometimes m i s j u d g e s her l i t e r a r y d a r t s h o o t i n g . Because o f h e r i n t e n s e commitment to t h e cause o f the v i c t i m she sometimes l o s e s her p e r s p e c t i v e , walltsrwing'* in:: t h e o v e r s e n t i m e n t a l i t y . of'-a. s t o r y . 1 i k e " C l o t h e t h e Naked" and w r i t i n g poems l i k e " R a i n y N i g h t , " w h i c h she l a t e r a d m i t t e d were w r i t t e n as she t r i e d t o " [ f o l l o w ] i h the e x q u i s i t e f o o t s t e p s o f M i s s M i l l a y , u n h a p p i l y i n [heir]* 10 own h o r r i b l e sneaker s. "'LJ Such l a p s e s , on top of her r e p u t a t i o n as a " w i t , " d i d n o t h i n g t o b o l s t e r her s e l f -c o n f i d e n c e e i t h e r as an i n d i v i d u a l o r as a w r i t e r . Because of her g i a n t p e r s o n a l i n s e c u r i t y , P a r k e r i s r e l u c t a n t t o i n f l i c t a s t r i c t , e x p l i c i t l y - s t a t e d "moral v i s i o n " upon her r e a d e r s . Y e t one does emerge. I t emphasizes t h e l a c k o f d i r e c t i o n , the f u t i l i t y o f hope and t h e g e n e r a l / overwhelming absence of God i n l i f e as she sees i t . N e i t h e r her c h a r a c t e r s nor her r e a d e r s are o f f e r e d any o t h e r way o f s e e i n g t h e w o r l d : t h e one she c r e a t e d was t h e o n l y one. she knew. W i t , humour and compassion do, however, temper her message, a l l o w i n g the r e a d e r some freedom t o d e c i d e how much b i t t e r s a t i r i c m e d i c i n e he w i s h e s t o swallow i n any g i v e n dose. The i n s t r u c t i v e s t u f f i s t h e r e and w a i t i n g , b u t i t need n o t be t a k e n a l l a t once. I n W r i t e r s a t Work: The P a r i s Review I n t e r v i e w s , M a r i o n Capron asked Dorothy P a r k e r i f she thought her v e r s e w r i t i n g -had been b e n e f i c i a l t o her p r o s e . The a u t h o r r e p l i e d , " F r a n k l i n P. Adams once gave me a book of F r e n c h v e r s e forms and t o l d me t o copy t h e i r d e s i g n , t h a t by c o p y i n g them I would g e t , p r e c i s i o n i n p r o s e . The men you i m i t a t e i n v e r s e i n f l u e n c e your p r o s e , and what I got out o f i t was p r e c i s i o n , a l l I r e a l i z e I've ever had i n p r o s e w r i t i n g . " " ' ' ^ T h i s s e l f -d i s p a r a g i n g statement i s o f c o u r s e n o t t r u e , b u t i t does make us c o n s c i o u s of her. w r i t i n g s t y l e - - t h e a u t h o r ' s m a n i p u l a t i o n of t h e r e a d e r , as i t were. Because t h i s i s a t h e m a t i c s t u d y 11 r a t h e r than a s t y l i s t i c a n a l y s i s , n o t v e r y much emphasis w i l l be p l a c e d upon t h e p r o s e . Some r e p r e s e n t a t i v e passages w i l l be examined, however, i n o r d e r t o h e i g h t e n - t h e r e a d e r ' s awareness o f some o f P a r k e r ' s more commonly a p p l i e d l i t e r a r y t e c h n i q u e s . D o r o t h y P a r k e r ' s w r i t i n g s e r v e d as a p e r s o n a l c a t h a r s i s w h i c h was, a t t h e same t i m e , a s t r o n g s o c i a l i n d i c t m e n t . Andre M a u r o i s once more says i t b e s t when he su g g e s t s t h a t "Sans doute, ces malheureuses sont r i d i c u l e s , semble nous d i r e Dorothy P a r k e r . Mais ne sommes-nous pas tous r i d i c u l e s ? L e u r s v i e s sont manquees? . . . Eh b i e n ! e t l e s notres?""'"^ 12 Notes: Introduction "'"Dorothy Parker, as quoted in The Algonquin Wits, R. E. Drennan, ed. (New York: The Citadel Press, 1968), p. 120. 2 Elizabeth Janeway, review of Constant Reader and You Might a.S; Well Live, i n Saturday Review, 53" (October 10, T9T0y73U. 3 I b i d . ^ L i l l i a n Hellman, An Unfinished Woman (Boston: L i t t l e , Brown., 1969), p. 214. Janeway, p. 31. William Shanahan, "Robert Benchley and.'Dorothy Parker: Punch and Judy i n Formal Dress," Rendezvous, 3 (Spring 1968), 33, 34. ^John Keats, You Might as; Well Live: The L i f e and  Times of Dorothy Parker (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1970), p. 264. o William Somerset Maugham, "Variations on a Theme," from the o r i g i n a l introduction to The Portable Dorothy Parker, as quoted i n The Portable Dorothy Parker: Revised and  Enlarged E d i t i o n (New York" The Viking Press, 1973), p. 60Of. A l l references to Parker's works w i l l be taken from th i s e d i t i o n (NVP) , ^ andAtheirupgg.e.mtiTambersrl±nc-luded:vin'';ib.Keit:e&t, unless otherwise noted. 9 " Andre' Mauro i s , "Ecrivains americains: Dorothy Parker," Revue de Paris, 53 ( A p r i l 1947), 9. •^Donald Ogden Stewart, as quoted i n Keats, p. 62. "^Mark van Doren, "Dorothy Parker," The English Journal, 23, No. 7 (September 1934), 542. 12; Janeway;, p 31. 13 Dorothy Parker, as quoted i n Writers at Work: The  Paris Review Interviews, ed. Malcolm Cowley-(New York: Viking Press, 1958), p. 75. Ibid. Maurois, 14 Chapter I : The M a n i p u l a t o r s As n o t e d above, t h e s t o r i e s c o m p r i s i n g t h e m a n i p u l a t o r group can be d i v i d e d q u i t e n e a t l y i n t o two s e c t i o n s : p o r t r a i t s o f c h a r a c t e r s c l o s e l y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h s p e c i f i c v i c t i m s , and more a b s t r a c t p o r t r a i t s o f g e n e r a l t y p e s . The s t o r i e s to be d e a l t w i t h under the f i r s t h e a d i n g a r e "The C u s t a r d H e a r t , " "Song of t h e S h i r t , 1941," " C l o t h e t h e Naked," " H o r s i e , " " L i t t l e C u r t i s , " "The Wonderful O l d Gentleman," "Mr. D u r a n t " and "The B o l t b e h i n d t h e B l u e . " I n t h e second c a t e g o r y we f i n d "Arrangement i n B l a c k and W h i t e , " "From t h e D i a r y o f a New Y o t k Lady" and "Mrs. C a r r i n g t o n and Mrs. Crane." " S o l d i e r s o f the R e p u b l i c " w i l l a l s o be d i s c u s s e d h e r e , s i n c e i t concerns P a r k e r ' s v i e w o f h e r s e l f as a m a n i p u l a t o r i n r e l a t i o n t o a v i c t i m i z e d s o c i e t y . - S e c t i o n 1-The members of t h e f i r s t group of m a n i p u l a t o r s might e a s i l y be c a l l e d t h e E s t a b l i s h m e n t " R i c h - B i t c h M a t r o n s " - -Mr. Durant seems t o q u a l i f y i n s p i t e o f h i s sex. These p e o p l e a r e a l l t y r a n n i c a l baby a u t o c r a t s , n o t - v e r y - b e n i g n d e s p o t s , who l e a d t h e i r l i v e s g e n u i n e l y unaware of t h e havoc 15 and p a i n l e f t f l o a t i n g i n t h e i r wakes. We a r e reminded o f F. S c o t t F i t z g e r a l d ' s c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n i n The G r e a t Gatsby: "They were c a r e l e s s p e o p l e , Tom and D a i s y - - t h e y smashed up t h i n g s and c r e a t u r e s and t h e n r e t r e a t e d back i n t o t h e i r money or t h e i r v a s t c a r e l e s s n e s s , o r whatever i t was t h a t k e p t them t o g e t h e r , and l e t o t h e r p e o p l e c l e a n up t h e mess th e y had made. . . ."^ I n t h e s e s t o r i e s , however, t h e c l e a n i n g - u p i s u s u a l l y e x p e d i t i o u s r a t h e r t h a n p r o p e r , and t h e r e a d e r i s t h e n l e f t t o s o r t t h i n g s out a c c o r d i n g t o . h i s own sense o f p r o p r i e t y . M o r a l o u t r a g e d e v e l o p s from a s t r o n g r e a c t i o n a g a i n s t t h e s o - c a l l e d p r o t a g o n i s t , r a t h e r t h a n from any sense o f i n v o l v e m e n t w i t h a s p e c i f i c v i c t i m , and t h u s P a r k e r ' s s t r u g g l e toward a development o f o b j e c t i v i t y and independent j u d g e m e n t . i n her a u d i e n c e , t h e g o a l o f any s a t i r i c a l w r i t e r , i s c a r r i e d one s t e p f u r t h e r . When we do become, i n v o l v e d w i t h t h e v i c t i m i n t h e s e m a n i p u l a t o r - o r i e n t e d s t o r i e s , t h e y • l o s e t h e i r impact, as i s t h e case w i t h " C l o t h e t h e Naked" and " S o l d i e r s o f the R e p u b l i c . " Involvement w i t h the v i c t i m a t t h i s s t a g e would s i d e t r a c k us from the p r e c i s e , detached i r o n y w i t h L w h i c h her m a n i p u l a t o r s a r e l a q u e r e d , and so P a r k e r w i s e l y a t t e m p t s t o keep i t t o a minimum here.. .In."Dorothy P a r k e r ' s I d l e Men and Women," N o r r i s W. Y a t e s s t a t e s t h a t i n P a r k e r ' s s t o r i e s "her a c i d i t y b i t most o f t e n i n t o t h e g i l t and b r a s s o f a c e r t a i n t y p e o f American 2 p e r s o n a l i t y , the s e l f - a b s o r b e d female snob." " G i l t , " " b r a s s " 16 and " s e l f - a b s o r b e d female snob" d e s c r i b e v e r y w e l l a l l t h e " h e r o i n e s " we w i l l d e a l w i t h i n t h i s c h a p t e r , but none b e t t e r t h a n Mrs. L a n i e r i n "The C u s t a r d Heart, ;" :and:.Mrs . M a r t i n d a l e i n "Song of t h e S h i r t , 1941." Mrs. L a n i e r i s a p r o f e s s i o n a l w i s t f u l , " d e d i c a t e d t o w i s t f u l n e s s , as l e s s e r a r t i s t s t o words and p a i n t and m a r b l e " (p. 319). There i s a Mr. L a n i e r : "he had even been seen" (p. 320). T h i s does n o t , however, p r e c l u d e Mrs. L a n i e r ' s e n t e r t a i n i n g v a r i o u s groups o f young men whose main purpose i n l i f e seems t o be t h e s h e l t e r i n g o f her h e a r t f rom th e t e r r i b l e r e a l i t i e s o f l i f e . I n v a r i a b l y one young man w i l l b e g i n t o s t a y l a t e r t h a n t h e o t h e r s , t h e n t o a r r i v e e a r l i e r , t h en be t h e o n l y young man. t o whom Mrs. L a n i e r i s a t home--and t h e n , a b r u p t l y , she w i l l be a t home t o a l l b u t him. The f a c e s may change, but the p a t t e r n w i l l r e m a i n th e same. The d e p a r t u r e s a r e a l l p r e d i c a t e d upon the same event: Mrs. L a n i e r ' s l o n g i n g l y - e x p r e s s e d d e s i r e f o r a c h i l d , and the i n t e r c h a n g e a b l e young man's h o t l y - a s s e r t e d i n t e n t i o n t o do something ..for, her " I f : o n l y I;, had > a c l i t t l e : -baby^.V she would' " s i g h , "a l i t t l e , l i t t l e baby, I t h i n k I ' c o u l d be a l m o s t happy." And t h e n she would f o l d h e r d e l i c a t e arms, and l i g h t l y , - s l o w l y r o c k them, as i f t h e y c r a d l e d t h a t l i t t l e , l i t t l e one o f her dear dreams. Then, the d e n i e d madonna, she was a t her most w i s t f u l , and t h e young man would have l i v e d o r d i e d f o r h e r , as she bade him. Mrs. L a n i e r never mentioned why h e r w i s h was u n f u l f i l l e d ; t h e young man would know her t o be too sweet t o p l a c e blame, t o f proud :to t e l l . But, so c l o s e t o her i n t h e p a l e l i g h t , he would u n d e r s t a n d , and h i s b l o o d would s w i r l 17 with fury that such clods as Mr. Lanier remained u h k i l l e d . He would'beseech Mrs. Lanier, f i r s t i n halting murmurs, then i n rushes of hot words, to l e t him take her away from the v h e l l of her l i f e and try to make her almost happy. It would'be afte r t h i s that Mrs. Lanier would be out to the young man, would be i l l , would be incapable of being disturbed'(p. 323). Gwennie, her maid, i s the one.constant in'Mrs. Lanier's l i f e and, as far as Mrs. Lanier i s concerned, exists only i n r e l a t i o n to her and for her express protection. Even the old, well-beloved family chauffeur must leave when he begins to look his unaesthetic age. His replacement i s a Mellors type named Kane who becomes "a p o s i t i v e comfort" (p. 325) to Mrs. Lanier, but he disappoints her c r u e l l y by disappearing just as Gwennie comes down with a strange sort of cold which leaves her eyes "heavy and red and her face pale and swollen" ( i b i d . ) . The reader quickly r e a l i z e s that Kane had seduced Gwennie and l e f t her when he discovered she was pregnant, but Mrs. Lanier remains unaware of what i s happening around her, even joking about,the healthy "cuteness" of Gwennie's expanding waist, a l l the more remarkable for the fact that Gwennie s t i l l seems to be suffering from that cold (p. 326). When Mrs. Lanier begins to rehearse her baby speech one evening as Gwennie pins up her hair, the poor maid loses "Control. Dropping the hairbrush she runs from the room, but she i s s t i l l so sensitive to the vulnerable Mrs. Lanier that she apologizes profusely as she leaves. Her actions 18 do, however, have what may be termed a p o s i t i v e e f f e c t : Mrs. L a n i e r s a t l o o k i n g a f t e r Gwennie, her hands a t her wounded h e a r t . S l o w l y she t u r n e d back t o her m i r r o r , and what she saw t h e r e a r r e s t e d h e r ; t h e a r t i s t knows the m a s t e r p i e c e . Here was t h e p e r f e c t i o n o f her c a r e e r , t h e s u b l i -m a t i o n of w i s t f u l n e s s ; i t was t h a t l o o k o f g r i e v e d b ewilderment t h a t d i d i t . C a r e f u l l y she k e p t i t upon her f a c e as she r o s e from t h e m i r r o r and, w i t h her l o v e l y hands s t i l l s h i e l d i n g her h e a r t , went down t o t h e new young man (p. 327). Mrs. L a n i e r ' s t o t a l , u n t h i n k a b l e l a c k o f comprehension i s matched o n l y by Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e ' s ; i n d e e d , the l a t t e r ' s a l m o s t d e l i b e r a t e s t u p ' i d i t y may be s a i d to s u r p a s s i t . J u s t as Mrs. L a n i e r i s t h e p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n o f w i s t f u l n e s s , Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e i s The B i g H e a r t : "The s i z e of Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e ' s h e a r t was renowned among her f r i e n d s , and t h e y , as f r i e n d s w i l l , had gone around b a b b l i n g about itV (p. 65). She i s d e e p l y committed t o many c h a r i t i e s , d o i n g e v e r y t h i n g she p o s s i b l y can f o r the war e f f o r t , a t g r e a t p e r s o n a l s a c r i f i c e : A l l t h e f l a g s l o o k e d brand-new. The r e d and t h e w h i t e and the b l u e were so v i v i d t h e y f a i r l y v i b r a t e d , and the c r i s p s t a r s seemed t o dance on t h e i r p o i n t s . Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e had a f l a g , t o o , 5 c l i p p e d t o the l a p e l o f her j a c k e t . She had had q u a n t i t i e s of r u b i e s and diamonds and s a p p h i r e s j u s t k n o c k i n g about, s e t i n f l o r a l d e s i g n s on e v e n i n g bags and v a n i t y boxes and c i g a r e t t e c a s e s ; she had t a k e n the l o t o f them t o her j e w e l l e r , 10 and he had assembled them i n t o a charming l i t t l e O l d G l o r y . There had been enough o f them f o r him t o d e v i s e a r i p p l e d f l a g , and t h a t was f o r t u n a t e , f o r t h o s e f l a t f l a g s l o o k e d sharp and s t i f f . There were numbers of emeralds, f o r m e r l y f i g u r i n g as 15 l e a v e s and stems i n the f l o r a l d e s i g n s , w h i c h were o f c o u r s e o f no use t o t h e p r e s e n t scheme and so were l e f t o v e r , i n an embossed l e a t h e r case. Some day, perhaps, Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e . w o u l d c o n f e r w i t h her j e w e l l e r about an arrangement t o employ them. 20 But t h e r e was not time f o r such m a t t e r s now (p. 6 5 f ) . 1 9 This passage, one of Parker's most stingingly precise and vehemently indicting, deserves some s t y l i s t i c comment. Repetition of both, words"and sounds and use of ironic understatement are' the two techniques which strike us most at f i r s t glance. "And," for example, is used eleven times in one hundred seventy-five words, seven times in the f i r s t hundred. In the second sentence i t emphasizes the colours which make up the flag, rather than the idea i t represents: we would expect the phrase "red, white, and blue." Parker uses this fragmentation to draw our attention to Mrs. Martindale's superficial patriotism, to her concentration on the components and the connectives rather than on the concept with which she is supposedly so preoccupied. In the fourth sentence "and" further underlines Mrs. Martindale's charac'teEi.and-dpps-i€.Mn-inns©.ciety.ybyYcr.eat.inggthe structure which l i s t s in specific yet casual triplets the jewels and trinkets she takes for granted. -Her off-hand attitude is supported by the shift of diction in Parker's use of the word "quantities" in line six, and by the phrases "just knocking about" and "the lot of them" in lines seven and nine ; Irony is f i r s t hinted at by the clause "Mrs. Martindale had a flag, too," :in line four; i t becomes progressively more overt through the "charming" of line ten, the cutting "and that was fortunate" of line twelve, the "of course" of line sixteen and the "perhaps" of line eighteen, and i t springs up f u l l y grown in "But there was not time for such 20 m a t t e r s now," t h e a b r u p t l a s t sentence o f t h e ' p a r a g r a p h . A l t h o u g h P a r k e r ' s o s t e n s i b l e r o l e i s t h a t ' o f n o n - e v a l u a t i v e r e p o r t e r , we r e a l i s e t h a t she f e e l s l i t t l e b ut contempt f o r her main c h a r a c t e r . Her d i s g u s t and our enjoyment a r e b o t h h e i g h t e n e d by t h e m u l t i c o l o u r e d meanings i n w h i c h she c l o a k s her t r u e f e e l i n g s . The imagery o f t h e passage i s v i s u a l , as i t i s i n most of P a r k e r ' s d e s c r i p t i o n s . When r e a d a l o u d , however, th e passage p r o v e s t o be p l e a s i n g t o the ear as w e l l - - a second, a l b e i t unacknowledged, b e n e f i t from her p o e t i c e x p e r i e n c e . I n the second s e n t e n c e , t h e f i r s t example of a l l i t e r a t i o n j u <s I " i <~ ~ and s y m m e t r i c a l metre appears i n " v i v i d t h e y f a i r l y v i b r a t e d " : t h e sounds of t h e a c c e n t e d v's ..and t h e f ( v o i c e l e s s v) b i n d t h e phrase i n t o a u n i t w h i c h i t s e l f v i b r a t e s ; t h e b a l a n c e d d a c t y l s a l s o c o n t r i b u t e t o t h i s e f f e c t . P a r k e r r e p e a t s t h e b a l a n c e d a l l i t e r a t i o n i n l i n e t h i r t e e n - - " t h e I t s/ 1 ^ 1 . f l a t f l a g s l o o k e d sharp and s t i f f " - - u s i n g t h e heavy spondee t o h e i g h t e n the c o n t r a s t between t h o s e f l a g s and t h e i a m b i c one d e s c r i b e d i n t h e l i n e b e f o r e : " d e v i s e a r i p p l e d f l a g . " The a l l i t e r a t i o n o f " f o r m e r l y f i g u r i n g " i n l i n e f o u r t e e n s t r e t c h e s toward t h e " f l o r a l " o f t h e n e x t l i n e t h r o u g h t h e h e l p o f t h e s t r i c t metre o f t h e f i r s t c l a u s e o f t h a t s e n t e n c e : "There were numbers of emeralds, f o r m e r l y f i g u r i n g as l e a v e s u> i • v» i — ^ / and stems i n t h e f l o r a l d e s i g n s , " g i v i n g the whole a s o f t , rounded c o m p l e t e n e s s . I n t h e p a r a g r a p h p r e c e d i n g t h i s passage we were 21 introduced to Mrs. Martindale's big heart; here we are introduced to the lady herself. Parker's s k i l l allows her to transmit her disapproval by means of seemingly innocent, objective descriptions of the attitudes and thought patterns of her characters, thus apparently permitting her readers to shape their own evaluations from a f a i r l y broad range of emotions. The perceptive reader w i l l of course recognize the irony and match the author's contempt, while the not-so-finely turned reader w i l l admire Mrs. Martindale for her staunch patriotism in the face of such personal depri-vation. Both groups /^howevercwill be struck by Parker's description, and being thus drawn in, w i l l be forced to commit themselves to the story and to form some definite reaction to i t . Mrs. Martindale's greatest sacrifice is her work. Every weekday afternoon finds her at Headquarters, sewing hospital jackets for the wounded soldiers overseas. She hates the work, she is no good at i t , but she forces herself to the task, waiting anxiously for Headquarters to close for the summer and free her. However, countless additional jackets are desperately needed, and Mrs. Martindale's big heart volunteers to finish twelve more before the autumn (the twelve do not include the one she has half-finished). When Mrs. Martindale.returns home she goes immediately to her sitting room, whose colour has been painstakingly matched to her eyes and hair, and, as she struggles to 22 f i n i s h t he neck b i n d i n g , she i s summoned to the t e l e p h o n e . An a c q u a i n t a n c e who i s l e a v i n g t o w n ; f o r the'summer a n x i o u s l y a s k s i f Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e ; might p o s s i b l y have some work f o r " h e r " Mrs. C h r i s t i e . Mrs. C h r i s t i e ' s daughter has been c r i p p l e d by i n f a n t i l e p a r a l y s i s and t h e r e f o r e the rwork must be something she can do a t home, but she w i l l p i c k up and d e l i v e r , and she i s "so q u i c k , and so good" (p. 7 2 ) . Mrs...Martindale:: f i n d s r h e r s e l f a t a temporary l o s s , b u t she promises t o do her b e s t : Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e went back t o her b l u e - g r a y q u i l t e d s a t i n . A g a i n she took up t h e u n f i n i s h e d c o a t . A s h a f t o f the e x c e p t i o n a l l y b r i g h t sun-l i g h t shot p a s t a vase o f b u t t e r f l y o r c h i d s and s e t t l e d upon t h e waving h a i r under t h e g r a c i o u s c o i f . But Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e d i d n o t t u r n t o meet i t . Her b l u e - g r a y eyes were bent on t h e drudgery of h er f i n g e r s . T h i s c o a t , and the n t h e t w e l v e o t h e r s beyond i t . The need, t h e d e s p e r a t e , d r e a d f u l need, and the t e r r i b l e i m p o r t a n c e o f t i m e . She t o o k a s t i t c h and a n o t h e r s t i t c h and a n o t h e r s t i t c h and a n o t h e r s t i t c h ; she l o o k e d a t t h e i r w a v e r i n g l i n e , p u l l e d the t h r e a d from her n e e d l e , r i p p e d out t h r e e o f t h e s t i t c h e s , r e t h r e a d e d h e r n e e d l e , and s t i t c h e d a g a i n . And as she s t i t c h e d , f a i t h f u l t o her promise and t o her h e a r t , she r a c k e d h er b r a i n s . ( p . 73). A g a i n , p i t y f o r Mrs. C h r i s t i e and f o r her c r i p p l e d daughter i s not what P a r k e r i s s t r i v i n g f o r . Any s t r o n g e m o t i o n a l r e s p o n s e would d i s t r a c t . t h e r e a d e r from h er p o r t r a i t , and d e t r a c t from i t s e f f e c t i v e n e s s . The l u r i d d e t a i l s s e r v e i n s t e a d t o p o i n t up Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e ' s p r o f o u n d i n a b i l i t y t o see beyond h e r s e l f , t o relate.::;to..mother:'human b e i n g s on any l e v e l o t h e r t h a n t h e most s u p e r f i c i a l . I n h i s a r t i c l e e n t i t l e d "Dorothy P a r k e r R e v i s i t e d , " Ross L a b r i e 23 s t a t e s : " H a r m l e s s l y s h a l l o w i n th e m s e l v e s , perhaps, Mrs. L a n i e r and Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e s y m b o l i z e power w i t h i n American s o c i e t y , power w h i c h i s c a p r i c i o u s l y u sed t o s e r v e t h e demands of pampered h e a r t s and i n d u l g e d e n t h u s i a s m s . F o r those women who manage to s u r v i v e the w i t h e r i n g e f f e c t s of t h e i r r o l e s , e i t h e r t h r o u g h t h e freedom o f a f f l u e n c e o r t h r o u g h i n d i v i d u a l energy, t h e r e i s the r o l e o f emotion, g e n e r a l l y c h i l d l i k e and always peremptory--a law un t o i t s e l f . T h i s i s made to seem i n e v i t a b l e i n a c i v i l i z a t i o n w h i c h i s obs e s s e d w i t h t h i n g s and f u n d a m e n t a l l y u n i n t e r e s t e d i n t h e i n t e r i o r l i f e . " " ^ I t i s t h i s f e e l i n g o f i n e v i t a b i l i t y i n t h e b e h a v i o u r of h e r E s t a b l i s h m e n t matrons w h i c h makes the P a r k e r s t o r i e s c o n c erned w i t h them so p a r a d o x i c a l . These women must r e a l i s e what t h e y a re d o i n g , t h e y must be c o n s c i o u s o f t h e e s s e n t i a l baseness o f t h e i r l i v e s and a c t i o n s , t h e r e a d e r c r i e s : t h e y must be a c t i n g out o f p e r v e r s i t y . Only when the r e a d e r sees t h a t t h i s i s n o t t r u e can he r e c e i v e t h e f u l l a r t i s t i c and s o c i a l l y c r i t i c a l impact t o be found i n most o f P a r k e r ' s s t o r i e s . She does n o t w r i t e about t h e way t h i n g s a r e supposed t o be, but about t h e way t h e y a r e , and the sooner h er au d i e n c e r e a l i s e s t h i s , t h e more i t w i l l a p p r e c i a t e and l e a r n from h er s a t i r e . "The C u s t a r d H e a r t " and "Song o f t h e S h i r t , 1941" a r e f u l l - f a c e p o r t r a i t s o f t h e i r E s t a b l i s h m e n t - m a n i p u l a t o r p r o t a g o n i s t s , but " H o r s i e " and " C l o t h e . t h e Naked" t a k e 24 t h e i r p e r s p e c t i v e s from t h e v i c t i m ' s p o i n t o f v i e w . The h e r o i n e s h e r e a r e b o t h members of the lower c l a s s e s . A l t h o u g h M i s s W i l m a r t h i s a t r a i n e d n u r s e and, as such, " c o u l d n o t be asked t o d i n e w i t h t h e m a i d s " (p. 273), she i s o b v i o u s l y n o t i n C a m i l l a C r u g e r ' s c l a s s . B i g L a n n i e "went out by t h e day t o the houses of s e c u r e and l e i s u r e d l a d i e s t o wash t h e i r s i l k s and t h e i r l i n e n s . She d i d her work p e r f e c t l y ; some of the l a d i e s even t o l d her so" (p. 360). B i g L a n n i e i s b l a c k . M i s s W i l m a r t h s u p p o r t s her mother, who "doesn't get around v e r y w e l l any more" (p. 273), and t h e aunt who keeps her mother company. B i g L a n n i e t a k e s c a r e o f her b a s t a r d grandson Raymond, b l i n d s i n c e b i r t h . T h e i r p e r s p e c t i v e s are a l l t h e s e s t o r i e s have i n common, however. Whereas " H o r s i e " i s a t i g h t l y - s t r u c t u r e d , h i g h l y - c r a f t e d d e s c r i p t i o n o f a woman condemned t o p o l i t e t o l e r a t i o n throug.h'..,no f a u l t o f her own, " C l o t h e t h e Naked" i s a c a p i t a l - L L i b e r a l g h e t t o romance w i t h . a t r i c k e n d i n g r e m i n i s c e n t o f some o f 0. Henry's weaker s t o r i e s . Pathos sometimes comes d a n g e r o u s l y c l o s e t o b a t h o s , and o f t e n i t i s o n l y t h e r e a d e r ' s mood w h i c h d e c i d e s w h i c h e f f e c t has been a c h i e v e d . The scene i n w h i c h Raymond goes o u t d o o r s f o r the f i r s t time a f t e r a l o n g , c o l d w i n t e r , d r e s s e d i n t h e c l o t h e s " M r s . Ewing has c h i l l i n g l y condescended t o g i v e B i g L a n n i e , i s a good example o f t h i s u n n e c e s s a r y t e n s i o n : I t was n o t the l a u g h t e r he had known; i t was n o t the l a u g h t e r he had l i v e d on. I t was l i k e g r e a t f l a i l s b e a t i n g him f l a t , g r e a t prongs t e a r i n g h i s f l e s h from h i s bones. I t was coming 25 a t him, to k i l l him. I t drew s l y l y back, and t h e n i t smashed a g a i n s t him. I t s w i r l e d around and over him, and he c o u l d n ot b r e a t h e . He screamed and t r i e d t o r u n out t h r o u g h i t , and f e l l , and i t l i c k e d o v e r him, h o w l i n g h i g h e r . H i s c l o t h e s u n r o l l e d , and h i s shoes f l a p p e d on h i s f e e t . Each t i m e he c o u l d r i s e , he f e l l a g a i n . I t was as i f t h e s t r e e t were p e r p e n d i c u l a r b e f o r e him, and t h e l a u g h t e r l e a p i n g a t h i s back. He c o u l d n o t f i n d t h e f e n c e , he d i d n o t know w h i c h way he was: t u r n e d . He l a y screaming, i n b l o o d and dust and darkness (p. 368). What c o u l d have o c c a s i o n e d such r i d i c u l e ? Why, Raymond i s w e a r i n g Mr. Ewing's c a s t - o f f f o r m a l s u i t . The e n d i n g o f " C l o t h e the Naked" i s as b a n a l and u n o r i g i n a l as i t i s out o f c h a r a c t e r w i t h t h e . d e s c r i b e d b e h a v i o u r o f t h e g h e t t o i n h a b i t a n t s . I f we b e l i e v e t h e c o n t e n t i o n t h a t , "Had anyone come i n t o B i g L a n n i e ' s room to t a k e Raymond away t o an asylum f o r the b l i n d , t h e n e i g h b o r s would have f o u g h t f o r him w i t h s t o n e s and r a i l s and b o i l i n g w a t e r " (p. 363), t h e s t o r y f a l l s a p a r t a t t h e i r o v e r r e a c t i o n . I f we do n o t , t h e s t o r y has been p o i n t l e s s . I t i s t h e s t o r y ' s b a s i c p r e m i s e - - t h a t i n a poor g h e t t o such as the a u t h o r d e s c r i b e s , anyone, e s p e c i a l l y a b l i n d c h i l d , would be t r e a t e d i n t h i s f a s h i o n - - w h i c h i s f a u l t y . Mrs. P a r k e r ' s b l e e d i n g h e a r t i s showing, and she must pay the a r t i s t i c p r i c e . A l t h o u g h she does make some p o i n t s about r a c i a l i n e q u a l i t y , t h e y a r e l o s t i n the r e a d e r ' s g e n e r a l l y u n f a v o u r a b l e r e a c t i o n s . "Arrangement i n B l a c k and Wh i t e " i s a much more e f f e c t i v e _ s t o r y . M i s s W i l m a r t h ' s s i t u a t i o n may not be as t r a g i c as B i g 26 L a n n i e ' s , b u t . i t i s c e r t a i n l y more p o i g n a n t . T o l d w i t h c l a s s i c P a r k e r detachment, her s t o r y a f f e c t s us i n terms of what she can never be, and i t becomes more v i v i d when c o n t r a s t e d w i t h what C a m i l l a Cruger i s and r e p r e s e n t s : "'Those c h i l d r e n , ' C a m i l l a ' s mother was wont t o say, c h u c k l i n g . 'Those, two k i d s . The independence o f them! S t r u g g l i n g a l o n g on cheese and k i s s e s . Why, t h e y h a r d l y l e t me pay f o r t h e t r a i n e d n u r s e . And i t was a l l we c o u l d do,, l a s t Christmas-, wtocm£^Ceaig&l$a'.-&aJce-'~tfee^ag-kard•••and the c h a u f f e u r ' " (p. 261). Her v i s i t o r s s a i d t h a t C a m i l l a l o o k e d l o v e l i e r than e v e r , b u t t h e y were m i s t a k e n . She was o n l y as l o v e l y as she had always been. They spoke i n hushed v o i c e s of t h e new l o o k i n her eyes s i n c e h e r motherhood; but i t was t h e same f a r b r i g h t n e s s t h a t had always l a i n t h e r e . They s a i d how w h i t e she was and how l i f t e d above o t h e r p e o p l e ; t h e y f o r g o t t h a t she had always been p a l e as m o o n l i g h t and had always worn a d e l i c a t e d i s t a i n , as l i g h t as t h e l a c e t h a t c o v e r e d her b r e a s t . Her d o c t o r c a u t i o n e d t e n d e r l y a g a i n s t h u r r y , besought her t o t a k e r e c o v e r y s l o w l y - - C a m i l l a , who had never done a n y t h i n g q u i c k l y i n her l i f e . . . Motherhood had n o t b r o u g h t p e r f e c t i o n t o C a m i l l a ' s l o v e l i -n e s s . She had had t h a t b e f o r e , ( p . 265). And l i k e D a i s y Buchanan, of whom N i c k had " h e a r d i t s a i d t h a t D a i s y ' s murmur was o n l y to make p e o p l e l e a n toward h e r , " C a m i l l a ' s " l i g h t f i g u r e t u r n e d always a l i t t l e away from those about h e r , so t h a t she must ffiewe her head and speak her slow words over her s h o u l d e r t o them" (p. 266). The s t o r y g e t s i t s t i t l e from G e r a l d and C a m i l l a ' s nickname f o r M i s s W i l m a r t h . I t i s c r u e l l y a p t : her l o n g f a c e l o o k s u n c a n n i l y e q u i n e , i n e x p r e s s i o n as w e l l as i n 27 f a c t . !Xabrie,;;notes: M i s s W i l m a r t h ' s o d d i t y i n c r e a s e s i n p r o p o r t i o n ;': t o h e r r e j e c t i o n by o t h e r s . The s i g h t o f the co n c e r n and a t t e n t i o n l a v i s h e d upon C a m i l l a throws h er own drab i s o l a t i o n i n t o r e l i e f , and has the e f f e c t o f i n t e n s i f y i n g her u g l i n e s s . The m o r a l d e s i g n i s c o n f i r m e d a t t h e end o f the s t o r y , when she i s o f f - h a n d e d l y g i v e n a box o f f l o w e r s by G e r a l d Cruger, who i s g r e a t l y r e l i e v e d t o be f i n a l l y g e t t i n g r i d o f h e r . " G e r a l d has n o t e d the v a r i o u s f l u c t u a t i o n s i n M i s s W i l m a r t h ' s appearance, a l t h o u g h he i s u n a b l e t o account f o r them, and he i s s e n s i t i v e enough t o i n s t i n c t i v e l y buy h e r . f l o w e r s . He i s , however, q u i c k t o deny any such awareness: " ' I was so c r a z e d a t t h e i d e a t h a t she was r e a l l y g o i n g , ' he s a i d , ' t h a t I must have l o s t my head. No one was more s u r p r i s e d t h a n I , b u y i n g g a r d e n i a s f o r H o r s i e ' " (p. 274). The s u b t l e i m p l i c a t i o n seems t o be t h a t E s t a b l i s h -ment men a r e f o r some r e a s o n n o t as bad as t h e i r women, not as d e l i b e r a t e l y hardened or r o l e - b o u n d . G e r a l d appears q u i t e n a i v e and impetuous throughout the s t o r y , t r e a t i n g C a m i l l a as a f r a g i l e c r e a t i o n r a t h e r t h a n as a f l e s h and b l o o d c r e a t u r e l i k e h i m s e l f , a l t h o u g h she seems t o be i n f a c t the s t r o n g e r o f the p a i r . The t w o - f o l d i r . o n y l o f "Horsie". tomes i n the l a s t p a r a g r a p h . When M i s s W i l m a r t h l o o k s back a t t h e house, G e r a l d has a l r e a d y d i s a p p e a r e d : "He must have r u n a c r o s s the s i d e w a l k - - r u n , t o g e t back t o the f r a g r a n t room and the l i t t l e y e l l o w r o s e s and .Camilla . . . They would be a l o n e t o g e t h e r ; t h e y would d i n e a l o n e t o g e t h e r by c a n d l e -l i g h t ; t h e y would be a l o n e t o g e t h e r i n the n i g h t . . . 28 I t was perhaps f o r t u n a t e t h a t no one l o o k e d i n t h e l i m o u s i n e . A b e h o l d e r must have been s t a r t l e d t o l e a r n t h a t a human f a c e c o u l d l o o k as much l i k e t h a t o f a weary mare as d i d M i s s W i l m a r t h ' s " (p. 275). But when the f l o w e r s s l i d e over on t h e s e a t as t h e c a r t u r n s , M i s s W i l m a r t h i s reminded o f them, and when she opens th e box, her e x p r e s s i o n changes: The f l o r i s t ' s box s l i p p e d a g a i n s t M i s s W i l m a r t h ' s knee. She l o o k e d down a t i t . Then she took i t on her l a p , r a i s e d t h e l i d a l i t t l e and peeped a t t h e waxy bouquet. I t would have been a l l f a i r t h e n f o r a chance s p e c t a t o r ; M i s s W i l m a r t h ' s s t r a n g e resemblance was not a p p a r e n t , as she l o o k e d a t her f l o w e r s . They were h e r f l o w e r s . A man had g i v e n them.to h e r . She had been g i v e n f l o w e r s . They might n o t f a d e maybe f o r days. And she c o u l d keep th e box ( i b i d . ) . Thus M i s s W i l m a r t h becomes b e s t - l o o k i n g when t h e r e i s no one to see h e r , and she does. itoe^.erflpJd'weisst.g.iv.ehuto- he-r*-fo"r'~-all t h e wrong r e a s o n s . " H o r s i e " succeeds because i t i s so d e l i c a t e l y b a l a n c e d . D o r o t h y P a r k e r p a i n s t a k i n g l y p e r m i t s us t o f e e l q u i t e s o r r y f o r M i s s W i l m a r t h w i t h o u t a l l o w i n g us t o become to o i n v o l v e d w i t h h e r. The a u t h o r a c h i e v e s t h i s e f f e c t by f i r s t making us v e r y aware o f M i s s W i l m a r t h ' s appearance, and t h e n c o n s t a n t l y r e m i n d i n g us o f i t . Once she has made c e r t a i n we r e a l i z e t h a t M i s s W i l m a r t h i s condemned t o be an e t e r n a l v i c t i m , P a r k e r can e a s i l y and i r o n i c a l l y g r a n t her o n e . b r i e f , u s e l e s s r e p r i e v e . I n " L i t t l e C u r t i s , " "The Wonderful O l d Gentleman" and "Mr. Durant" we f i n d f u r t h e r v a r i a t i o n s on the m a n i p u l a t o r -v i c t i m theme. I n " L i t t l e C u r t i s " t h e v i c t i m i s an adopted 29 c h i l d who i s punished for attempting to be a normal l i t t l e b o y ; ; i n "The Wonderful Old Gentleman" the nominal arpressor l i e s upsta i r s dying throughout the s tory, ever-present although never seen; i n "Mr -. Durant" the matron-figure i s a man wi th a cur ious . set of double standards. The s tor ies are a l l w r i t t e n i n a very low-key, extremely object ive s t y l e , and progress i n a de l ibera te , almost f a t a l fashion. There are no surprise endings here- - in fact , the s tor ies do not end so much as close, gent ly . We f e e l as though we are witnessing scenes which have been played before and which w i l l be played again, rather than i so l a ted incidents i n the character 's l i v e s . Mrs. Alber t Matson adopted Cur t i s " ' a t the best place i n New York . ' No one was surprised at that . Mrs. Matson always went to the best places when she shopped i n New York. You thought of her se lect ing a c h i l d as she selected a l l her other belongings: a good one, one that would l a s t " (p. 342 f ) . 7 We are t o l d that " C u r t i s r e a l l y comes of a very nice family , for an orphan" (p. 349), and that although both h i s parents are dead, h i s father did go to co l lege . These are important q u a l i f i c a t i o n s , since Cur t i s i s being groomed to take over the Matson and the Whitmore fortunes, which Mrs. Matson would have people bel ieve to be quite subs tant i a l . Af ter a l l , "she had been Miss Laura Whitmore, g of the Drop Forge and Tool Works Whitmores" (p. 341), and Mr. Matson " i s the Matson Adding Machines" (p. 348). Training Curt i s properly i s a d i f f i c u l t task. Discovering 30 h i m p l a y i n g w i t h t h e f u r n a c e m a n ' s s o n , M r s . M a t s o n i s f o r c e d t o spank h i m ' b e f o r e ' s h e c a n even t a k e o f f h e r h a t , and she f i n d s t h i s b e h a v i o u r e s p e c i a l l y i n c o n s i d e r a t e s i n c e C u r t i s knows, she w i l l be h a v i n g company t h a t a f t e r n o o n . M r s . M a t s o n i s t h e t y p e of' ;woman ;w.ho-must ' : .have ' -eveyything j u s t r i g h t . The p a r t y i s a s a t i s f a c t o r y a f f a i r . The l e f t o v e r -c h i c k e n s a n d w i c h e s a n d t h e o n e - e g g c a k e a r e p r o p e r l y c o m p l i -m e n t e d , and t h a n k f u l l y n e i t h e r M r s . Swan, M r s . K e r l e y n o r d e a f o l d M r s . Cook r e g a r d s t h e c a n d y b a s k e t s as . f a v o u r s t o be t a k e n home. C u r t i s has been i n t r o d u c e d t o t h e l a d i e s , who f i n d h i m c h a r m i n g , a l t h o u g h he f i n d s M r s . Swan a b i t t o o e f f u s i v e , and M r s . C o o k ' s l a r g e , i n t e s t i n e - s h a p e d s p e a k i n g t.tu%e iBass^ina^esfo him..--'- T ^ i s j t d r y J « r e ^ e h y s 3 i % V * M - i m ' a x " when Mr . M a t s o n a c c i d e n t a l l y b r u s h e s a g a i n s t M r s . C o o k ' s s p e a k i n g t u b e and k n o c k s i t t o t h e g r o u n d : C u r t i s ' c o n t r o l w e n t . P e a l u p o n p e a l o f h i g h , h e l p l e s s l a u g h t e r came from. h i m . He l a u g h e d o n , a g a i n s t M r s . M a t s o n ' s c r y o f " C u r t i s 1" a g a i n s t M r . M a t s o n ' s f r o w n . He d o u b l e d o v e r w i t h h i s hands on h i s l i t t l e brown k n e e s , and l a u g h e d mad l a u g h t e r . " C u r t i s 1" " b e l l o w e d M r . M a t s o n . The l a u g h t e r d i e d . C u r t i s s t r a i g h t e n e d h i m s e l f , and one l a s t l i t t l e moan o f en joyment e s c a p e d h i m . M r . M a t s o n p o i n t e d w i t h a m a g n i f i c e n t g e s t u r e . " U p s t a i r s ! " he boomed. C u r t i s t u r n e d and c l i m b e d t h e s t a i r s . He l o o k e d s m a l l b e s i d e t h e b a n i s t e r ( p . 3 5 2 ) . C u r t i s i s r e a l l y n o t t o b l a m e . He i s o n l y f i v e y e a r s o l d , and h i s r e a c t i o n i s p e r f e c t l y n o r m a l . Many a d u l t s m i g h t . b e t empted t o l a u g h u n d e r s i m i l a r c i r c u m s t a n c e s . A l t h o u g h i t c o u l d n o t be c o n s i d e r e d a c c e p t a b l e . b e h a v i o u r , i t i s e x p l i c a b l e and p a r d o n a b l e i n a y o u n g s t e r . C u r t i s , however, i s a commodity r a t h e r than a' c h i l d . H i s f u n c t i o n i s t o be p r o p e r l y and o v e r t l y g r a t e f u l f o r a l l t h a t t h e Matsons, e s p e c i a l l y Mrs'. Matson, a r e d o i n g f o r him, i n s p i t o f t h e f a c t t h a t t h e y a r e , o f c o u r s e , d o i n g e v e r y t h i n g f o r themselves . Theirvimainrr-.easonff o r a a d o p . t i n g v - C . u r t i s ,.was ,not because t h e y l o v e d him, or because t h e y wanted a c h i l d , but because t h e y would do a n y t h i n g to keep t h e i r e s t a t e from f a l l i n g i n t o the hands o f Henry Matson's c h i l d r e n , whom they had l o n g p i c t u r e d as e v e n t u a l l y " g o i n g t h r o u g h t h e i r money l i k e Sherman t o t h e s e a " (p. 342). As suggested above, t h e s e were n o t the f i r s t t i m e s t h a t C u r t i s has been p u n i s h e d , n or a r e they; l i k e l y t o be the l a s t . C u r t i s w i l l be p r o p e r l y b r o u g h t up i f i t k i l l s him, and i t w e l l m i g h t: "Oh, c h i l d r e n , " Mrs. K e r l e y a s s u r e d h e r , " t h e y ' r e funny som.etimes--especia.lly a l i t t l e boy l i k e tha'.t. .You .can;:t e x p e c t so much. My goodness, y o u ' l l f i x a l l t h a t ! I always say I don't know any c h i l d t h a t ' s g e t t i n g any b e t t e r b r i n g i n g up th a n t h a t young o n e - - j u s t as i f he was your own." Peace r e t u r n e d t o the b r e a s t o f Mrs. Matson. "Oh--goodness!" she s a i d . There was a l m o s t a coyness i n her s m i l e as she c l o s e d t h e door on the d e p a r t i n g (p. 353). Once more, i t i s to the m a n i p u l a t i v e Mrs. Matson we must r e l a t e , r a t h e r t h a n t o t h e i n n o c e n t v i c t i m , C u r t i s . H i s y o u t h and h i s s t e r e o t y p e d s i t u a t i o n i n s u l a t e him too w e l l from any deep emotions we might o t h e r w i s e be tempted 32 t o t r a n s f e r , b u t P a r k e r c a r e f u l l y b a r e s h i s stepmother's s o u l ' i n order' t h a t we may see c l e a r l y t h r o u g h h er d e s p i c a b l e p r e t e n s i o n s . "The W o n d e r f u l O l d Gentleman" has what must be one o f the most e f f e c t i v e b e g i n n i n g s o f any P a r k e r s h o r t s t o r y : I f t he B a i n s had s t r i v e n f o r y e a r s , t h e y c o u l d have been no more s u c c e s s f u l i n making t h e i r l i v i n g - r o o m i n t o a s m a l l b u t a d m i r a b l y complete museum o f o b j e c t s s u g g e s t i n g s t r a i n , d i s c o m f o r t , o r the tomb. Yet t h e y had never even t r i e d f o r t h e e f f e c t . . . . I t was c u r i o u s how p e r f e c t l y [the a r t i c l e s ] a l l f i t t e d i n t o the g e n e r a l scheme. I t was as i f they had a l l been s e l e c t e d by a s i n g l e e n t h u s i a s t t o whom time was b u t l i t t l e o b j e c t , so l o n g as he c o u l d a c h i e v e the e v e n t u a l r e s u l t o f t r a n s -f o r m i n g the B a i n l i v i n g - r o o m , i n t o a home chamber o f h o r r o r s , m o d i f i e d a b i t f o r f a m i l y use (p. 5 2 ) . Mr. and Mrs. B a i n and Mrs. W h i t t a k e r , Mrs. B a i n ' s s i s t e r , a r e s e a t e d i n t h i s l i v i n g room, w a i t i n g f o r t h e women's f a t h e r t o d i e . He has been l i v i n g w i t h t h e B a i n s f o r f i v e y e a r s , c a u s i n g them p.endieiss "amouh.fes ^ d f - t r o u b l e and g r i e f , b ut th e y s t e a d f a s t l y r e f u s e t o admit t h i s , or even t o acknowledge i t t o t h e m s e l v e s . He might.have l i v e d w i t h Mrs. W h i t t a k e r and her husband, who, i n a d d i t i o n t o h a v i n g a l a r g e amount o f money, had no c h i l d r e n . But Mrs. W h i t t a k e r found h e r s e l f u n a b l e t o d e p r i v e h er l e s s f o r t u n a t e r e l a t i v e s o f t h e o p p o r t u n i t y t o e n j o y t h e Wonderf u l O l d Gentleman's company. As t h e s t o r y p r o g r e s s e s , the r e a d e r - - r e a l i s e s "that the "O l d Gentleman," as he i s r e f e r r e d t o , was n o t q u i t e as w o n d e r f u l as t h e f a m i l y p r e t e n d s . The B a i n s ' son l e f t home 33 b e c a u s e o f h i m ; he a l m o s t r u i n e d t h e l i f e o f h i s own son M a t t , w i t h whom t h e f a m i l y i s no l o n g e r i n t o u c h . He has l e f t a l l h i s money t o M r s . W h i t t a k e r , l e a v i n g t h e B a i n s t h e f u r n i t u r e he had b r o u g h t w i t h h i m , h i s s e t o f T h a c k e r a y , and t h e r e s t o f a sum o f money he had once g i v e n M r . B a i n . The l a t t e r had r e g a r d e d i t as a l o a n , h o w e v e r , and had a l m o s t f i n i s h e d p a y i n g h i s f a t h e r - i n - l a w b a c k . I n ".The W o n d e r f u l O l d G e n t l e m a n " we f i n d t h e c l e a r e s t r e p r e s e n t a t i o n o f a m a n i p u l a t o r - v i c t i m r e l a t i o n s h i p . I n f a c t , t h e r e a r e two s e p a r a t e r e l a t i o n s h i p s b e i n g c a r r i e d o n . The f i r s t m a n i p u l a t o r i s t h e t i t l e c h a r a c t e r . A n y t h o u g h t t h a t he m i g h t have a c t e d u n f a i r l y w o u l d n e v e r have c r o s s e d t h e o l d m a n ' s m i n d , o r , i f i t h a d , i t w o u l d have been r e j e c t e d o u t o f h a n d . The s e c o n d , whose a c t i o n s a r e n o t q u i t e as o v e r t , i s M r s . W h i t t a k e r . Not a t a l l a l t r u i s t i c , she r e f u s e d t o become i n v o l v e d when she m i g h t have done some g o o d , and any hopes t h e i d e a l i s t i c r e a d e r may have had a b o u t h e r h e l p i n g h e r s i s t e r and h e r b r o t h e r - i n - l a w now a r e q u i c k l y d a s h e d . And t h r o u g h o u t t h e s t o r y t h e B a i n s r e m a i n p a t h e t i c a l l y and f r u s t r a t i n g l y unaware o f t h e ways i n w h i c h t h e y have been t a k e n a d v a n t a g e o f . F i r m l y c o n t r o l l e d u n d e r s t a t e m e n t and i r o n y . . . a r e a g a i n t h e t e c h n i q u e s w h i c h P a r k e r employs t o keep t h e s t o r y f r o m becoming t i r e s o m e and c l o y i n g . She i n f o r m s u s t h a t Mrs : : , W h i t t a k e r ; :"was d r e s s e d , i n c o m p l i m e n t t o t h e o c c a s i o n , i n h e r b l a c k c r e p e de C h i n e , and she had l e f t h e r l a p i s - l a z u l i 34 pin, her olivine bracelet, and her t o p a z and amethyst rings at home in her bureau drawer, retaining only her lorgnette on i t s gold chain, i n case' there should be any reading to be done'.' (p: 55). sr.-.?Bainkis'e'rvres'&eo*oki'es on ' the plate painted by hand with clusters of cherries, --the plate she had used for^sandwiches when, several years ago, her'card club had met at her house. She had thought i t over a l i t t l e tonight, before she l i f t e d out the cherry plate, then quickly decided and resolutely heap\edc.it>withriCOokies. A f t e r a l l , i t was an occasion--informal, perhaps,but s t i l l an occasion (p. 54f). T i g h t s t y l i s t i c control is unfortunately not as evident in "Mr. Du r a n t . " That P a r k e r herself was not satisfied with the story is evident from a comparison of the various texts Q available, and even in the definitive V i k i n g edition there is a sense of something missing. The author maintains her distance and her objectivity, but perhaps not as surely or as consistently as in some of the other stories. "Mr. Durant"'s weaknesses might be explained in part by the story's date: i t was f i r s t p r i n t e d in 1924, which makes i t the earliest of any of the stories we. have, so f ar ^discu'ssecl, and one of the earliest of the "serious" works. I n spite o f these weaknesses, however, i t is s t i l l a f a i r l y good p i e c e , and i t may be found to suffer more in comparison than i t would i f considered on i t s own. Mr. Durant is the assistant manager of the credit department of a rubber company, a deliberately i r o n i c touch when we discover that the story concerns his predicament when he finds he has got the secretary with whom he has been having an affair "into t r o u b l e " (p. 39). 1 0 The g i r l , Rose, 35 manages t o o b t a i n an a b o r t i o n t h r o u g h t h e h e l p o f her g i r l -f r i e n d Ruby: i n s p i t e o f Mr. Durant's b o a s t t h a t "he knew 'a t h i n g o r two'"' ( i b i d . ) , he f i n d s h i m s e l f u n a b l e t o seek out t h e r e q u i r e d i n f o r m a t i o n . L a t e r Rose goes home to her s i s t e r vowing n e v e r ' t o r e t u r n , even" though Mr. Durant v o l u n t e e r s " t o put i n a good word f o r h e r whenever she wanted her j o b back" (p. 4 1 ) . He i s u n a b l e t o u n d e r s t a n d her r e a c t i o n . He has a l s o p a i d ^ f o f ^ t h e i o p e r a t i b n , ; . a l t h o u g h n o t ungrudgingly,.:.y. "'Nd.fr tha'taheheou'ldn„Vt have used t h e t w e n t y - f i v e v e r y n i c e l y h i m s e l f j u s t t h e n , w i t h J u n i o r ' s t e e t h , and a l l ! " ( i b i d . ) . But t h e u n p l e a s a n t e p i s o d e i s now o v e r , and Mr. Durant spends h i s e v e n i n g bus f i d e o g l i n g t h e p r e t t y young w o r k i n g g i r l s , h o p i n g t o see " t h e i r n arrow s k i r t s s l i d i n g up over t h e i r l e g s " (p. 4 2 ) . ^ When he a r r i v e s home he finds.':his c h i l d r e n e x c i t e d o ver a puppy w h i c h they have found, and w h i c h he e x p a n s i v e l y says t h e y may k e e p - - u n t i l h i s w i f e m e ntions t h a t i t i s a f e m a l e . He m o t i o n s . h e r out o f t h e room t o h i s den, and d r e s s e s h e r down a b r u p t l y : "Now you know p e r f e c t l y w e l l , Fan, we c a n ' t have t h a t dog around," he t o l d h e r . He used the low v o i c e r e s e r v e d f o r underwear and bathroom a r t i c l e s and k i n d r e d shady t o p i c s . There was a l l the k i n d n e s s i n h i s tones t h a t one has f o r a backward c h i l d , but a G i b r a l t a r -l i k e f i r m n e s s was b e h i n d i t . "You must be c r a z y t o even t h i n k we c o u l d f o r a m i n u t e . Why, I wouldn't g i v e a she-dog house room, not f o r any amount o f money. I t ' s d i s g u s t i n g , t h a t ' s , w h a t i t i s . " . . . " D i s g u s t i n g , " he r e p e a t e d . "You have a fe m a l e around, and you know what happens. A l l t h e males i n t h e n e i g h b o r h o o d w i l l be r u n n i n g a f t e r h e r . F i r s t t h i n g you know, she'd be 36 having puppies--and the way they look af ter they've had them, and a l l ! That would be nice for the ch i ldren to see, wouldn't i t ? I should think you'd think of t h e ' c h i l d r e n , Fan. No, s i r ; : t her e 1 1 •: baa nothing. l ike-,tha around -her e, not while I know i t . D i sgus t ing ! " (p. 46). Rather than break his promise to the ch i ld ren i n a concrete fashion, Mr. Durant proposes to put the dog out after they have gone to sleep, and to have h i s wife t e l l them the next morning that i t had run away. She agrees, and they consider the problem solved. "His peace wi th the world was once more i n t a c t , restored by t h i s simple so lu t ion of the l i t t l e d i f f i c u l t y . Again h i s mind wrapped i t s e l f i n the knowledge that everything was a l l f i x e d , a l l ready for a n i c e , fresh s t a r t . His arm was s t i l l around his wi fe ' s shoulder as they went on i n to dinner" ( i b i d . ) . Mr. Durant's hypocrisy i s staggering, but, l i k e Mrs. Lanier and Mrs. Mart indale , he i s incapable of recognizing i t . With h i s " r i c h - b i t c h , " bul ldozer-type mental i ty he f inds i t pe r fec t ly natura l that he could, have seduced Rose, pe r f ec t ly understandable that she should have been seduced (pp. 37-39). However, when i t becomes necessary for her to have an abort ion, when he f inds himself having to confront and to accept the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for h i s act ions , he w i t h -draws, upset and angry "tllha't |h'e v . s h ^ to f i n d a way to break the law of h i s country--probably the law of every country i n the world. Cer ta in ly of every decent C h r i s t i a n place" (p. 40). His a t t i tude throughout, the story i s that young women have been created for hi s enjoyment, 37 t h a t " t h e r e would always be o t h e r s " (p. 36 ) - - b u t were he to o b s e r v e t h a t b e h a v i o u r i n o t h e r men, o r t o f i n d : . t h a t t h e young women, o r even young dogs, took p l e a s u r e i n t h e i r own s e x u a l i t y , h i s s c o r n and w r a t h would be u n c o n t a i n a b l e . T h i s h y p o c r i s y i s c a r e f u l l y u n d e r l i n e d i n P a r k e r ' s d e s c r i p t i o n o f " F a t h e r ' s den." I t s books g i v e us t h e key to h i s p e r s o n a l i t y : He had d i r e c t e d t h e d e c o r a t i o n o f h i s den, had seen t h a t i t had been made a t r u l y m a s c u l i n e room. Red paper c o v e r e d i t s w a l l s , up to the wooden r a c k on w h i c h were d i s p l a y e d o r n a m e n t a l 5 s t e i n s , o f do m e s t i c manufacture. Empty p i p e -r a c k s - - M r . Durant smoked c i g a r s - - w e r e n a i l e d a g a i n s t the r e d paper a t f r e a u e n t i n t e r v a l s . On one w a l l was an i n d i f f e r e n t r e p r o d u c t i o n o f a drawing o f a young woman w i t h wings l i k e a 10 vampire b a t , and on a n o t h e r , a w a t e r - c o l o r e d p h o t o g r a p h o f "September Morn," the t i n t s r u n n i n g a b i t beyond t h e edges o f t h e f i g u r e as i f t h e a r t i s t ' s emotions had r e n d e r e d h i s hand u n s t e a d y . . . Mr. Durant's books were l i n e d up b e h i n d the 15 g l a s s of t h e bookcase. They were a l l t a l l , t h i c k books, b r i g h t l y bound, and th e y j u s t i f i e d h i s p r i d e i n t h e i r showing. They were m o s t l y a c c o u n t s of f a v o r i t e s o f the F r e n c h c o u r t , w i t h a few volumes on odd p e r s o n a l h a b i t s o f variouslmonarchs,;..'and the 20 a d v e n t u r e s o f .former R u s s i a n monks. Mrs. Durant, who never had time t o get around t o r e a d i n g , r e g a r d e d them w i t h awe, and thought o f her husband as one of t h e country^'s l e a d i n g b i b l i o p h i l e s . . . Mr. Durant thought o f h i m s e l f as an • ' i n d e f a t i g a b l e 25 c o l l e c t o r and an i n s a t i a b l e r e a d e r . But he was always d i s a p p o i n t e d i n h i s books, a f t e r he had sent f o r them. They were n e v e r so good as t h e a d v e r t i s e m e n t s had l e d him t o b e l i e v e (pp. 45-46). The main t h r u s t o f t h e passage i s one o f i r o n y , i r o n y c r e a t e d by the a l t e r n a t e d use o f u n d e r s t a t e m e n t , e x a g g e r a t i o n , and a s i d e s . P a r k e r s i g n a l s t o her r e a d e r s i n t h e f i r s t s e n t e n c e t h a t she w i l l be g o i n g m e r c i l e s s l y a f t e r Mr. Durant when she s t a t e s t h a t he had i n d e e d made h i s den "a t r u l y 38 m a s c u l i n e room" ( l i n e s - two" t h r o u g h t h r e e ) , and then c o n t i n u e s t o d e s c r i b e what must s u r e l y be t h e epitome of b o u r g e o i s 12 p r e c o n c e p t i o n s and bad t a s t e . The e x h i b i t o f beer mugs i s more th a n an a f f e c t a t i o n , p r e t e n t i o u s l y s u g g e s t i n g European t r a v e l ; the mugs themselves must a l s o be i n s i p i d , and t h e a b s u r d u s e l e s s n e s s of the p i p e r a c k s i s u n d e r l i n e d by t h e i r p l u r a l i t y and by t h e f a c t t h a t t h e y o c c u r " a t f r e q u e n t i n t e r v a l s " ( l i n e seven, i t a l i c s mine) a g a i n s t t h e r e p e a t e d r e d o f the w a l l p a p e r . Mr. Durant's t a s t e i n a r t i s c a l l e d i n t o q u e s t i o n by the q u a l i f i c a t i o n t h a t h i s f i r s t r e p r o d u c t i o n i s " i n d i f f e r e n t " ( l i n e e i g h t ) , and i t s s u b j e c t m a t t e r i s the f i r s t c l u e the r e a d e r i s g i v e n w h i c h s u g g e s t s " t h a t Mr. D u r a n t 1 s s e x u a l p h i l o s o p h i e s , f a n t a s i e s and p r e d i l e c t i o n s t a k e a c o n c r e t e form. The p o i n t i s emphaaizedbby'Ja&srpos s e ssing» a u p r i r i t o f "September Morn," one i n w h i c h " t h e t i n t s [run] a b i t beyond the edges of the f i g u r e " ( l i n e s e l e v e n t h r o u g h t w e l v e ) . By n o t i n g t h i s , ' t h e a u t h o r i m p l i e s not o n l y t h e poor q u a l i t y o f the p r i n t , but a l s o t h a t the p i c t u r e has been e x p u r g a t e d f o r mass'consumption, and the p o s s i b i l i t y t h a t c h i l d r e n might see i t . She i m m e d i a t e l y u n d e r c u t s t h i s , however, by s u g g e s t i n g t h a t Mr. Durant f i n d s the b l u r r i n e s s even more t i t i l l a t i n g than' the o r i g i n a l when she s c a t h i n g l y d e s c r i b e s t h e p i c t u r e ' t h r o u g h h i s eyes as l o o k i n g "as i f t h e a r t i s t ' s emotions had r e n d e r e d h i s hand-unsteady" ( l i n e t h i r t e e n ) . Mr. Durant's books a r e h i s . f a v o u r i t e s , though. H i s 39 wide range o f i n t e r e s t s and the e x t e n t o f h i s c o l l e c t i o n a r e n o t e d by t h e a d v e r b i a l " m o s t l y " ( l i n e seventeen) and "a few" ( l i n e e i g h t e e n ) ; " a c c o u n t s " ( l i n e s e v e n t e e n ) , "odd p e r s o n a l h a b i t s " ( l i n e n i n e t e e n ) and " a d v e n t u r e s " ( l i n e twenty) a r e i n n o c u o u s l y e u p h e m i s t i c u n d e r s t a t e m e n t s t o use t o d e s c r i b e the books' s u b j e c t m a t t e r . The a u t h o r would lament t h a t Mrs. Durant "never had time t o g e t around t o r e a d i n g " ( l i n e t w e n t y - o n e ) , b u t as t h i s m ight d e s t r o y her c o n c e p t i o n ' t h a t her spouse i s "one o f the c o u n t r y ' s l e a d i n g b i b l i o p h i l e s " ( l i n e t w e n t y - t h r e e ) , i t i s p r o b a b l y j u s t as w e l l . " B i b l i o p h i l e " i t s e l f i s a f e l i c i t o u s f i n d : a l t h o u g h t h e word i s p e r f e c t l y i n n o c e n t and c o r r e c t , " i t s s o u n d s smutty, and t h e r e f o r e h e l p s remind us t h a t Mr. Durant i s the h y p o c r i t i c a l c l o s e t D i r t y O l d Man par e x c e l l e n c e . Mr. D u r a n t ' s d i s c r i m i n a t i n g t a s t e i n l i t e r a t u r e i s a l s o noted.' I n t h e l a s t p a r a g r a p h , w h i c h i s made even more'-e f f e c t i v e by i t s b r e v i t y and by t h e use of t h e c o o r d i n a t i n g c o n j u n c t i o n a t t h e b e g i n n i n g o f t h e second s e n t e n c e , P a r k e r t e l l s us t h a t the books never seemed t o meet Mr. Durant's j a d e d e x p e c t a t i o n s . We wonder m o m e n t a r i l y about the books, b u t t h e n we a r e e x p e r t l y r e t u r n e d t o t h e s u b j e c t , and wonder even more about the man. We a l s o wonder what the c h i l d r e n w i l l be l i k e when th e y grow up, b u t we a r e a f r a i d t o t h i n k about i t f o r too l o n g i n the f e a r t h a t we a l r e a d y know. L i k e C u r t i s , t h e y have 13 e x p e r i e n c e d t h i s s o r t o f b e h a v i o u r b e f o r e , and t h e y w i l l i n a l l p r o b a b i l i t y keep e x p e r i e n c i n g i t u n t i l t h e y e i t h e r 40 escape or succumb. •'"The B o l t b e h i n d t h e B l u e " i s a l a t e s t o r y , t h e t h i r d and l a s t i n the s e c t i o n o f " L a t e r S t o r i e s " i n t h e new V i k i n g P o r t a b l e . I n i t we see a f a i r l y c l e a r , a l b e i t i n d i r e c t , m a n i p u l a t o r - v i c t i m r e l a t i o n s h i p , and so t h e s t o r y iJiay.be:.:said t o form a l i n k between the s p e c i f i c m a n i p u l a t o r -v i c t i m - r e l a t i o n s h i p s e r i e s and the second v i c t i m l e s s p o r t r a i t group. A l t h o u g h t h e two c h a r a c t e r s i n t h e s t o r y a r e c l o s e l y j u x t a p o s e d , each i s d i s t i n c t l y drawn, and t h e y a r e d e v e l o p e d i n p a r a l l e l s , r a t h e r t h a n shown one,from t h e p e r s p e c t i v e o f the o t h e r , as i n t h e f i r s t f o u r s t o r i e s d i s c u s s e d above: M i s s Mary N i c h o l l was poor and p l a i n , w h i c h a f f l i c t i o n s c o m p e l l e d h e r , when she was i n t h e p r e s e n c e o f a more b l e s s e d l a d y , t o v a c i l l a t e between s q u i r m i n g h u m i l i t y and s p i t t i n g envy. The more b l e s s e d l a d y , her f r i e n d Mrs. H a z e l t o n , e n j o y e d M i s s N i c h o l l ' s v i s i t s o c c a s i o n a l l y ; h u m i l i t y i s a seemly t r i b u t e t o a f a v o r i t e o f f a t e , and t o be t h e cause of envy i s c o z y t o t h e ego. The v i s i t s had t o be k e p t o n l y o c c a s i o n a l , though. W i t h t h e y e a r s , M i s s N i c h o l l grew no l e s s f l a t i n the p u r s e and no more d e l i g h t f u l t o t h e eye, and i t i s a boresome b u s i n e s s t o go on and on f e e l i n g t e n d e r n e s s f o r one whose l u c k never changes (p. 394). Mrs. H a z e l t o n i s "not w e a l t h y or w e l l - t o - d o o r c o m f o r t a b l y o f f ; i n t h e p o p u l a r p h r a s e , Mrs. H a z e l t o n was l o a d e d " (p. 395). M i s s N i c h o l l i s a t the o t h e r extreme: h a v i n g a l m o s t n o t h i n g , her i d e a o f a b i g e v e n i n g i s g o i n g t o d i n n e r a t the Candlexvick (or t h e C a n d i e , as she and her f r i e n d M i s s C h r i s t i e d e s c r i b e i t t o t h e m s e l v e s ) , where one can g e t aomeal f o r o n l y two d o l l a r s , t i p i n c l u d e d . 41 The' s t r u c t u r e o f the s t o r y i s c o n t r a p u n t a l . One woman w i l l p r a i s e the o t h e r , who t h e n m o d e s t l y d i s c l a i m s a l l v i r t u e s ; then she r e t u r n s the compliment on a s l i g h t l y h i g h e r p l a n e , o n l y t o have i t g r a c i o u s l y d e n i e d , and so on. The c l i m a x i s r e a c h e d when Mrs. H a z e l t o n o f f e r s t o show M i s s N i c h o l l some o f her new d r e s s e s , " t h e c o s t o f t h e l e a s t o f w h i c h would have been two y e a r ' s r e n t t o M i s s N i c h o l l " (p. 410). But t h e n Mrs. H a z e l t o n must f i n d something f o r her g u e s t , and she s e t t l e s upon a s e q u i n e d e v e n i n g bag. The thought of M i s s N i c h o l l always brought w i t h i t a n a s t y l i t t l e g u i l t . She supposed she r e a l l y ought t o do more f o r t h e poor t h i n g . But what more c o u l d she do? I t was u n t h i n k a b l e t h a t you c o u l d t u c k a f o l d e d t w e n t y - d o l l a r b i l l i n t o h e r d r y palm; such p e o p l e were so i m p o s s i b l y s e n s i t i v e about b e i n g o b j e c t s o f c h a r i t y . You c o u l d have her come t o see you, f e e d her a d r i n k , l e t her l o o k a t your p r e t t y f l o w e r s , maybe g i v e her some l i t t l e t h i n g you were t h r o u g h w i t h - - s u c h a d o n a t i o n , u n l i k e c a s h , xrouhded no f e e l i n g s (p. 397). Nor does i t c r e a t e good ones, however. The bag i s o f c o u r s e u s e l e s s t o M i s s N i c h o l l , as a r e t h e b i g j a r o f b a t h s a l t s and t h e a f t e r - s h a v e l o t i o n she r e c e i v e d t h e p r e v i o u s C h r i s t m a s (p. 411). She a c c e p t s i t g r a t e f u l l y , though, and d e p a r t s , p r o m i s i n g Mrs. H a z e l t o n t h a t " I ' l l t h i n k o f you e v e r y t i m e I use i t " (p. 412). The s t o r y ends w i t h a c o u n t e r p o i n t coda. On her way t o t h e bus s t o p M i s s N i c h o l l r e c o u n t s t o h e r s e l f the d e t a i l s o f her a f t e r n o o n v i s i t , d i s p a r a g i n g e v e r y t h i n g Mrs. H a z e l t o n has, has done, or r e p r e s e n t s . She ^concludes her monologue by i n s i s t i n g she would n o t change p l a c e s w i t h Mrs. H a z e l t o n 42 f o r " a n y t h i n g on e a r t h " (p. 413). P a r k e r i n t e r p o l a t e s : " I t i s a s t r a n g e t h i n g , but i t i s a f a c t . Though i t had e v e r y j u s t i f i c a t i o n , a b o l t d i d n o t sweep down from t h e sky and s t r i k e M i s s N i c h o l l down, then and t h e r e " (p. 4 1 3 f ) . Mrs. H a z e l t o n , on t h e o t h e r hand, i s complacent, c o n t e n t t h a t she had managed t o m a i n t a i n her g r a c i o u s n e s s a t enough p e r s o n a l d i s c o m f o r t t o make her f e e l n o b l e about th e a f t e r -noon. When her daughter Ewie remarks t h a t she f e e l s s o r r y f o r " M i s s N i c k e r " ' s p l a i n l o o k s and poor c l o t h i n g , Mrs. H a z e l t s c o l d s h e r , s a y i n g t h a t M i s s N i c h o l l i s "a w o n d e r f u l woman" who has "more than a good many p e o p l e " (p. 414), and t h a t she, Mrs. H a z e l t o n , would be "more than g l a d to change p l a c e s w i t h Mary N i c h o l l " (p. 415). "And a g a i n t h a t b o l t , though s u r e l y s u f f i c i e n t l y p r o v o k e d , s t a y e d where i t was, up i n t h e back o f t h e b l u e " ( i b i d . ) . The h y p o c r i s y o f b o t h women i s as o b v i o u s and as deep as t h e i r e n t i r e r e l a t i o n s h i p i s s y m b i o t i c . M i s s N i c h o l l v i s i t s Mrs. H a z e l t o n i n o r d e r t o c o m p l a i n about how u n f a i r f a t e has been to her; she t h e n c o m f o r t s h e r s e l f w i t h t h e n o t i o n t h a t she, a t l e a s t , i s d o i n g something w i t h her l i f e . Mrs. H a z e l t o n e n t e r t a i n s h e r i n o r d e r t o be a b l e t o p l a y Lady B o u n t i f u l t o some poor c r e a t u r e , a t any low l e v e l . The p o i n t e d l y n o n - e v a l u a t i v e a u t h o r i a l i n t r u s i o n s i n t h e coda a r e what g i v e t h e s t o r y i t s s a r d o n i c f r e s h n e s s . W i t h o u t them, the s t o r y i s an e x e r c i s e i n m o r a l i t y w h i c h we have a l l r e a d b e f o r e . W i t h them, :i.however, the c h a r a c t e r s t a k e on new l i f e , and r e v i t a l i z e the f a b l e i n t o something t o w h i c h 43 a reader might pay attention. In "The Custard Heart," "Song of the Shirt, 1941," "Clothe the Naked," "Horsie," " L i t t l e C u r t i s , " "The Wonderful Old Gentleman," "Mr. Durant" and "The Bolt.behind the Blue," then, we have concerned ourselves with the manipulating Establishment characters who are associated with s p e c i f i c victims. These stories have a l l been more or less, serious and low-key, subtly s a t i r i c a l rather than b l a t a n t l y comical, and concerned with various relationships between the haves and the have-nots. In the next group of stories, which includes "Arrangement i n Black and White," "From the Diary of a New York Lady" and "Mrs. Carrington and Mrs. Crane," the connection between characters and comedy w i l l be reversed. The victimless manipulators w i l l simper, romp and stagger through th e i r various episodes, a f f e c t i n g us quite d i f f e r e n t l y from t h e i r apparently higher-class, more respectable s i s t e r s . Here the s a t i r e i s more pointed and more obvious; these stories are more b r i l l i a n t a r t i s t i c a l l y than those of the f i r s t group. But t h i s does not meani:that Dorothy Parker i s less serious about her messages. In the second group of stories she deals with the same themes she has dealt with above. If these stories seem more e f f e c t i v e , i t i s because the s a t i r i c a l sugar coating has made the p i l l easier to swallow, not because the medicine i s any less potent than the blander.::concoctions ~ "Soldiers of the Republic" w i l l also be discussed i n t h i s section, i n spite of the fact that i t i s not a comical 44 s t o r y . Here P a r k e r examines the r e l a t i o n s h i p between an E s t a b l i s h m e n t f i g u r e and an e n t i r e v i c t i m i z e d s o c i e t y , u n j u s t l y b l a m i n g t h e E s t a b l i s h m e n t a p r i o r i f o r c r e a t i n g and p e r p e t u a t i n g t h e i l l s o f t h a t s o c i e t y , and e q u a l l y u n j u s t l y p e r m i t t i n g t h e woman t o b e r a t e h e r s e l f f o r n o t b e i n g a b l e t o i m m e d i a t e l y and c o m p l e t e l y a l l e v i a t e t he s i t u a t i o n w i t h one s t r o k e o f her magic t y p e w r i t e r . The woman i s P a r k e r h e r s e l f , and the s o c i e t y i s S p a i n d u r i n g t h e C i v i l War. - S e c t i o n 2-As mentioned above, many o f the themes s t a t e d i n S e c t i o n 1 w i l l be t r a n s p o s e d and p l a y e d as more s p r i g h t l y v a r i a t i o n s i n S e c t i o n 2. "Arrangement i n B l a c k and Whi t e , " f o r example, d e a l s w i t h t h e same s u b j e c t as " C l o t h e the Naked": r a c i a l p r e j i u d i c e . I n " C l o t h e the Naked" i t i s o p e n l y a d m i t t e d and t a k e n f o r g r a n t e d by t h e c h a r a c t e r s i n v o l v e d , r e c o g n i z e d by t h e r e a d e r s , and m o r t a r - s h e l l e d by the a u t h o r , b u t i n "Arrangement i n B l a c k and White" i t appears i n an i n s i d i o u s and i n a much more dangerous form. A l t h o u g h the l e a d i n g c h a r a c t e r p r e t e n d s t o be u n b i a s e d , she i s i n f a c t more o f a b i g o t t h a t h er absent V i r g i n i a n husband B u r t o n , who has t h e i n t e g r i t y t o be honest about h i s f e e l i n g s . T h i s statement i s not meant t o suggest t h a t t h e woman , i s h y p o c r i t i c a l - - s h e i s t o o s t u p i d . She i s u n a b l e t o r e a l i s e t h a t t h e r e a r e many forms o f p r e j u d i c e , o r t h a t h e r s , one of t h e more s u b t l e , i s a l s o perhaps the most t r e a c h e r o u s : " I haven't t h e s l i g h t e s t f e e l i n g about c o l o r e d p e o p l e . Why, I'm j u s t c r a z y about some o f them. 45 They're jus t l i k e ch i ld ren- - ju s t as easygoing, , and always singing and laughing and everything. Aren ' t they the happiest things you ever saw i n your l i f e ? Honestly, i t makes me laugh jus t to hear them. Oh, I l i k e them. I r e a l l y do. W e l l , now, l i s t e n , I have t h i s colored laundress, I 've had her for years, and I'm devoted to her. She's a r e a l character. And I want to t e l l you, I think of her as my f r i e n d . That's the way I think of her. As I say to Burton, ' W e l l , for heaven's sakes, we're a l l human beings ! ' Aren ' t we?" (p. 20). The story takes place at a party given i n honour of a black singer whom the woman i s very eager to meet. Most of the dialogue centres around her supposedly broad-minded a t t i tudes , e spec ia l ly as they are opposed to the r i g i d , narrow sentiments held by her husband (Her host, a t r u l y l i b e r a l man, remains c a r e f u l l y non-committal throughout). Upon meeting the singer, the woman "extended her hand at the length of her arm and held i t so for a l l the world to see, u n t i l the Negro took i t , shook i t , and gave i t back to her" (p. 21). She speaks to him " w i t h great d i s t inc tnes s , moving her l i p s met iculous ly , as i f i n parlance w i t h the deaf" (p. 22), and when he leaves to t a l k to someone else she exclaims to''her host, " I l i k e d him. . . I haven't any f ee l ing at a l l because he's a colored man. I f e l t j u s t as natura l as I. would wi th anybody. Talked to him jus t as n a t u r a l l y , and everything. But honestly, I could hardly keep a s t ra ight face. I kept th inking of Burton. Oh, wait t i l l I t e l l Burton'I c a l l e d him ' M i s t e r ' ! " (p. 23). The descr ip t ion of the woman given i n the f i r s t 46 p a r a g r a p h o f t h e s t o r y g i v e s "us a f a i r l y good i d e a o f what we may expect from her: "The woman w i t h the p i n k v e l v e t p o p p i e s t w i n e d around t h e a s s i s t e d g o l d o f her h a i r t r a v e r s e d t h e crowded room a t an i n t e r e s t i n g g a i t combining a s k i p w i t h a s i d l e , and c l u t c h e d t h e l e a n arm o f her h o s t " (p. 19). A sense o f f a l s e n e s s , b r i t t l e n e s s and s h a l l o w n e s s i s i m m e d i a t e l y conveyed. When t h e woman i n f o r m s her h o s t t h a t she f e e l s " f i n e l y . . . J u s t s i m p l y f i n e l y " ( i b i d . ) , we shudder a t the a f f e c t a t i o n , p a i n f u l l y aware t h a t t h e r e w i l l be more t o come. L i k e Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e o f "Song o f t h e S h i r t , 1941," she i s u n a b l e t o see t h e t r e e s f o r t h e f o r e s t , i n c a p a b l e o f r e c o g n i s i n g i n h e r s e l f t h e p r e c i s e l a c k o f empathy and o f r e a l human emotions f o r w h i c h t h e y b o t h d i s p a r a g e t h e i r p e e r s . And l i k e Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e ' s s o l d i e r s , the Negroes might be b e t t e r o f f w i t h o u t h e r . On March 11, 1938, F. S c o t t F i t z g e r a l d w r o t e t o h i s daughter S c o t t i e , " I am g l a d you have f i n a l l y g o t t e n around t o l i k i n g D orothy P a r k e r and t h a t you had t h e good t a s t e t o p i c k out her ' D i a r y o f a New York Lady.' I t i s one o f her b e s t p i e c e s . " " ^ Most c r i t i c s seem t o agree: i t i s one o f h e r best-known and most, w i d e l y - a n t h o l o g i z e d s t o r i e s , second perhaps o n l y t o " B i g B l o n d e . " S t r i c t l y s p e a k i n g , i t i s a monologue r a t h e r t h a n a s t o r y , as d r a m a t i c i n i t s own way as Browning's "My L a s t Duchess." I n the V i k i n g P o r t a b l e Dorothy P a r k e r , "From the D i a r y o f a New York Lady" i s s u b t i t l e d " D u r i n g Days of H o r r o r , D e s p a i r , and World Change." I n A f t e r Such P l e a s u r e s , 47 however, i t i s d e s c r i b e d as h a v i n g been w r i t t e n " D u r i n g 16 Days of P a n i c , F r e n z y , and W orld Change." As mentioned above, th e V i k i n g e d i t i o n i s c o n s i d e r e d t o c o n t a i n t h e d e f i n i t i v e t e x t s , but i t i s ' i n t e r e s t i n g t o s p e c u l a t e upon P a r k e r ' s r e a s o n s f o r c h a n g i n g th e f i r s t two nouns. True, " p a n i c " and " f r e n z y " a r e c l o s e r t o each o t h e r i n meaning than " h o r r o r " and " d e s p a i r , " and. the a u t h o r may s i m p l y have w i s h e d t o e x p r e s s a w i d e r range of f e e l i n g s . On t h e o t h e r hand, " h o r r o r " and " d e s p a i r " a r e q u i e t e r t h a n " p a n i c " and " f r e n z y " ; perhaps she f e l t t h a t the l a t t e r p a i r went too f a r , and wanted to tone them down. A t h i r d s u g g e s t i o n might be t h a t " h o r r o r " and " d e s p a i r " a r e more i n t e n s e , more p e r s o n a l emotions, w h i c h would evoke more p r e c i s e l y what t h e c h a r a c t e r b e l i e v e s h e r s e l f t o be g o i n g t h r o u g h . The D e p r e s s i o n , the background f o r t h i s 1933 s t o r y , never seems to e n t e r i n t o i t . The w o r l d w h i c h i s c h a n g i n g i s -t h e l a d y ' s r a t h e r t h a n the s o c i o - g e o - p o l i t i c a l one, but when th e s t o r y was r e t i t l e d :.for the 1939 c o l l e c t i o n s o f s t o r i e s Here L i e s , a more p o i n t e d r e f e r e n c e t o t h e c o n t i n u i n g l y d i s m a l economic scene, as w e l l as t o t h e European s i t u a t i o n , may a l s o have been i n t e n d e d . I n any c a s e , what f o l l o w s t h e s u b t i t l e i s one o f t h e most e n t e r t a i n i n g p i e c e s i n P a r k e r ' s cannon, p o s s i b l y i n the body o f s h o r t l i t e r a t u r e o f t h e 1930's as w e l l . L i k e t h e woman i n "Arrangement i n B l a c k and W h i t e " and the t h r e e female m a n i p u l a t o r s of Chapter I I , t h e l a d y k e e p i n g t h e " D i a r y " i s unnamed. I n " D i a r y , " as i n "The Lady w i t h 48 the Lamp" and " C o u s i n L a r r y , " t h e t e c h n i q u e / i s used t o h e l p c r e a t e the monologue e f f e c t , but i t a l s o s e r v e s t o make us r e a l i s e t h a t t h e s e women c o u l d be any women--or, more l i k e l y , t o some extent.Everyman. The s t o r y i s a Monday-t h r o u g h - F r i d a y c h r o n i c l e o f what P a r k e r wants us t o t a k e t o be a t y p i c a l week i n the t y p i c a l l i f e o f a t y p i c a l New York s o c i a l i t e , and, t y p i c a l l y , e v e r y t h i n g t h a t might p o s s i b l y go wrong does. The lady'As p l i g h t c e n t r e s s y m b o l i c a l l y around her f i n g e r n a i l s : , t he s t o r y ' s a l l - p e r v a d i n g r e f r a i n i s "Damn M i s s Rose" (pp. 328, 329,. :331, 332), t h e m a n i c u r i s t . The woman's s o c i a l s t a n d i n g , i f n o t her e n t i r e s o c i a l l i f e , i s r a p i d l y d i s i n t e g r a t i n g , a l t h o u g h she would adamantly r e f u s e t o acknowledge t h i s even i f she c o u l d r e c o g n i s e i t . She i s e s t r a n g e d from her husband: a l t h o u g h t h e y seem to c o h a b i t , t h e y do n o t communicate. She goes out e v e r y n i g h t , but she i s always e s c o r t e d by the same man--although she b e l i e v e s him to be homosexual (p. 328)--because he i s the o n l y man she can g e t . She always buys t h e i r t h e a t r e t i c k e t s , and th e y always end up a t the same p a r t i e s w i t h t h e same p e o p l e and t h e same H u n g a r i a n m u s i c i a n s i n t h e same green c o a t s , and t h e y always have t h e same hangovers the n e x t morning. She i s p r e o c c u p i e d w i t h a "new number," a man whom she i s f o r e v e r p e s t e r i n g i n s p i t e o f h i s e f f o r t s t o i g n o r e h e r : " I t o l d him sometimes I get so n a u s e a t e d t h a t I c o u l d y i p , and I f e l t I a b s o l u t e l y had t o do something l i k e w r i t e or p a i n t . He s a i d why d i d n ' t I w r i t e or p a i n t " (p. 3,2*9). We know her end i s near when she d e c i d e s t o ask 49 him to a tea she has read about i n the paper--"they must have meant to i n v i t e me" (p. 331). Parker makes i t impossible for the reader to sympathise wi th her protagonist . He may muster up a very s l i g h t f ee l ing of contempt between laughs, but that would be a l l . The story i s meant to be h i l a r i o u s s a t i r e , and i t i s ; any emotional commitment between the reader and the character would di s turb the precarious balance by which "From the Diary of a New York Lady" in s t ruc t s as i t amuses. The importance of th i s equi l ibr ium shows up e spec ia l ly w e l l when the story i s contrasted wi th "Mrs. Carrington and Mrs. Crane," which was also published i n The New Yorker. Because i t s theme i s the by-now familiar-^eropliiaess of the l i v e s of r i c h Establishment women, and because i t i s not an e spec ia l ly w e l l - w r i t t e n story, i t i s not included i n any of Parker ' s co l l ec ted works. •'"Mrs-.CGarrlngt'on-,:arid;;=Mrs. •I-Cr.ane'" has a very simple p l o t . One of the women w i l l reproach an'.aspect of the behaviour of one of t h e i r f r i ends ; the other w i l l e n t h u s i a s t i c a l l y concur, and then both w i l l proceed to act i n t h i s yery manner. The story i s l i b e r a l l y spiced wi th " s imply" th i s and " l i t e r a l l y " that , making us ouite:aware of the empty heads of the pseudo-sophisticates wi th whom we are deal ing. Mrs. Carrington wants;-<toL:take'Ie'sQmepiSorto.6fccourse: or other at Columbia"''"7 for " s t i m u l a t i o n " ; when she hears that Mrs. Crane i s considering learning to tap dance, however, she decides that that might do, but only i f they can go together. 50 The d i f f e r e n c e between t h e s e two s t o r i e s l i e s i n t h e l e v e l o f s a t i r e as w e l l as i n t h e form. "From t h e D i a r y o f a New York Lady" i s a c e r b i c and b i t i n g , w r i t t e n w i t h g r e a t c r a f t and w i t h t h e a u t h o r i n c o n t r o l o f t h e r e a d e r a t e v e r y t u r n . "Mrs. C a r r i n g t o n and Mrs. Crane" i s s t r u c t u r a l l y and s t y l i s t i c a l l y l o o s e r . A t t i m e s i t almost r a m b l e s , w i t h the d i s a p p o i n t i n g r e s u l t t h a t i t ends up b e i n g a t e a s i n g c a r t o o n r a t h e r t h a n an i n d i c t i n g c a r i c a t u r e . I n " S o l d i e r s o f t h e R e p u b l i c , " a n o n - f i c t i o n account o f one o f her e x p e r i e n c e s i n S p a i n d u r i n g t h e C i v i l War, Dorothy P a r k e r g i v e s h e r s e l f t h e r o l e o f E s t a b l i s h m e n t m a t r o n - m a n i p u l a t o r - - o r , as she more s u c c i n t l y p u t s i t , t h e " p r i z e sow" (p. 167). L i k e " C l o t h e t h e Naked," " S o l d i e r s o f the R e p u b l i c " sometimes comes p e r i l o u s l y c l o s e t o t h e s l o p p i l y s e n t i m e n t a l because t h e a u t h o r i s i n c a p a b l e o f k e e p i n g h e r s e l f s u f f i c i e n t l y detached from the?eause i n w h i c h she i s so d e s p e r a t e l y t r y i n g t o i n v o l v e her a u d i e n c e . By p l a y i n g too much upon our emotions she t r i g g e r s our s e l f -d e f e n s e mechanisms r a t h e r t h a n any s y m p a t h e t i c f e e l i n g s we might h a r b o u r , and i n so doing,::,neatly sabotages her own m i s s i o n : "Oh, f o r God's sake, s t o p t h a t ! " I s a i d t o m y s e l f . " A l l r i g h t , so i t ' s got a b i t of b l u e r i b b o n on i t s h a i r . A l l r i g h t , so i t s mother went w i t h o u t e a t i n g so i t c o u l d l o o k p r e t t y when i t s f a t h e r came home on l e a v e . A l l r i g h t , so i t ' s h er b u s i n e s s , and none o f y o u r s . A l l r i g h t , so what have you got t o c r y a b o u t ? " (p. 165). P a r k e r ' s d i f f i c u l t y h e r e , b o t h as an a r t i s t and as a 51 human b e i n g , was t h a t w h i l e she f e l t and r e a c t e d , she was u n a b l e t o c o n s i d e r a n y t h i n g she mi g h t a c c o m p l i s h as c o n c r e t e o r w o r t h w h i l e (see "The S i e g e o f M a d r i d " ) . By g r o u p i n g h e r s e l f w i t h the Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e s and the Mrs. H a z e l t o n s , the s e l f - s t y l e d " L i t t l e Lady B o u n t i f u l " (p. 167) d i d h e r s e l f a grave i n j u s t i c e . She d i d n o t r e a l i s e , or perhaps because o f her i n s e c u r i t y was i n c a p a b l e o f a c c e p t i n g , t h a t she c o u l d n o t p o s s i b l y do more f o r her cause t h a n r e p o r t t h e t r u t h about what she saw. I n s t e a d , she went too f a r . I f P a r k e r had been a b l e t o c o n t r o l t h e s e o v e r - i n v o l v e d , s e l f - d e p r e c a t i n g t e n d e n c i e s i n h e r work, much o f i t would have been b e t t e r . I f she had been a b l e t o c o n t r o l them i n her p e r s o n a l l i f e , however, she might n e v e r have w r i t t e n a t a l l . The m a n i p u l a t o r s a r e c u r i o u s f i g u r e s . Some, l i k e Mrs. L a n i e r , Mrs. M a r t i n d a l e , t h e "Arrangement" woman and, presumably, P a r k e r h e r s e l f , spend t h e i r time g o i n g t h r o u g h o t h e r p e o p l e ' s l i v e s i n s e a r c h o f some m i r a c u l o u s " f u l f i l l m e n t " w h i c h w i l l somehow f a l l on t h e i r heads one day and g i v e "meaning" t o t h e i r e x i s t e n c e . O t h e r s , l i k e t h e C r u g e r s , Mr. Durant, and Mrs. Matson, b e l i e v e themselves happy and sec u r e i n t h e i r b e s t o f a l l p o s s i b l e w o r l d s , and l i v e w i t h no r e g a r d f o r o t h e r p e o p l e whatsoever. And who i s t o say the y a r e n o t happy? A l l D o r o t h y P a r k e r would have us do i s examine t h e s e ways o f l i f e and c o n s i d e r them v e r y c a r e -f u l l y . I f we f i n d them a c c e p t a b l e , t h a t i s our p r e r o g a t i v e . 52 She has a c h i e v e d her g o a l as a r e a l i s t i c p a i n t e r o f l i f e . I f we do not a c c e p t them,:..however, she has a l s o a c h i e v e d h e r g o a l as a s a t i r i c a l a r t i s t : t o make u s more aware o f who we a r e , how we a c t , and why we a r e t h e ways we- a r e . N When s p e c i f i c c h a r a c t e r s a r e r e l a t e d t o each o t h e r , t h i s c r e a t i o n o f awareness i s a c o m p a r a t i v e l y s i m p l e one. When she i n t r o d u c e s us t o her s o l i t a r y v i c t i m s , we see more o f what Do r o t h y P a r k e r i s r e a l l y about. 53 Notes: Chapter I """F. S c o t t F i t z g e r a l d , The Gr e a t Gatsby (New York: C h a r l e s S c r i b n e r ' s Sons, 1925J, p. 180f. 2 N o r r i s ¥. Y a t e s , The American Humorist: C o n s c i e n c e  o f the T w e n t i e t h C e n t u r y (Ames: Iowa S t a t e U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1964), p. HW. *~ 3 Ross L a b r i e , "Dorothy P a r k e r R e v i s i t e d , " p. 20 o f a twenty-two page m a n u s c r i p t t o be p u b l i s h e d i n The 'Canadian  Review o f American S t u d i e s i n e i t h e r t h e s p r i n g o r the f a l l o f 1976. F i t z g e r a l d , p. 9. See NVP, p. 260. L a b r i e , p. 13. As Mrs. Matson h e r s e l f says on p. 347, "Yes . . . I went r i g h t t o the b e s t p l a c e f o r him. M i s s Codman's n u r s e r y - - i t 1 s a b s o l u t e l y r e l i a b l e . You can get a w f u l l y n i c e -c h i l d r e n t h e r e . " °When P a r k e r and Robe r t B e n c h l e y s h a r e d an o f f i c e , on the t h i r d f l o o r of t h e M e t r o p o l i t a i n Opera House s t u d i o s , , one s t o r y t h e y t o l d about i t was t h a t t h e name l e t t e r e d on the door was " U t i c a Drop Forge and T o o l Co., R o b e r t B e n c h l e y , P r e s i d e n t ; Dorothy P a r k e r , P r e s i d e n t . " A n o t h e r was t h a t a f t e r B e n c h l e y l e f t , P a r k e r had t h e s i g n changed t o r e a d s i m p l y "Men." See K e a t s , p. 57. Q See American Mercury, 3 (September 1924), 81-7; 64 (June 1947), 694-703; Laments f o r the L i v i n g ; Here L i e s . S p e c i f i c changes have n o t been n o t e d h e r e , but t h e development o f t h e s t o r y i s an i n t e r e s t i n g one, and a s t u d y of the m a n u s c r i p t s c o u l d p r ove u s e f u l . ^ " S h e was ' i n t r o u b l e . ' N e i t h e r t h e n n or i n t h e s u c c e e d i n g days d i d she and Mr. Durant ever use any l e s s d e l i c a t e p h rase t o d e s c r i b e h er c o n d i t i o n . Even i n t h e i r t h o u g h t s , t h e y r e f e r r e d t o i t t h a t way" ; ( i b i d . ) . "'"''"See a l s o p. 35f: Rath e r shabby, she was, i n her rough c o a t 54 w i t h i t s s h a g g i n e s s rubbed o f f here and t h e r e . But t h e r e was a something i n the way her c h e a p l y smart t u r b a n was jammed over her eyes, i n the way her t h i n young f i g u r e moved under the l o o s e c o a t . Mr. Durant p o i n t e d h i s tongue, and moved i t d e l i c a t e l y a l o n g h i s c o o l , . s m o o t h upper l i p . The c a r approached, c l a n g e d t o a s t o p b e f o r e them. Mr. Durant stepped g a l l a n t l y a s i d e t o l e t the g i r l g e t i n f i r s t . He d i d not h e l p her t o e n t e r , but the s o l i c i t o u s way i n w h i c h he s u p e r i n t e n d e d t h e p r o c e s s gave a l l t h e e f f e c t o f h i s h a v i n g a c t u a l l y a s s i s t e d h e r . Her t i g h t l i t t l e s k i r t s l i p p e d up over her t h i n , p r e t t y l e g s as she took the h i g h . s t e p . There was a r u n i n one o f her f l i m s y s i l k s t o c k i n g s . She was d o u b t l e s s u n c o n s c i o u s o f i t ; i t was w e l l back toward t h e seam, e x t e n d i n g , p r o b a b l y from her g a r t e r , h a l f w a y down the c a l f . Mr. Durant had an odd d e s i r e t o c a t c h h i s t h u m b - n a i l i n the. p r e s e n t end o f t h e r u n , and t o draw i t on down u n t i l the s l i m l i n e o f t h e dropped s t i t c h e s r e a c h e d t o the top o f her low shoe. An i n d u l g e n t s m i l e a t h i s whimsy p l a y e d about h i s mouth, b r o a d e n i n g t o a g r i n o f a f f a b l e e v e n i n g g r e e t i n g f o r t h e c o n d u c t o r , as he e n t e r e d t h e c a r and p a i d h i s f a r e . The d e l e t e d passage a t t h e end o f p a r a g r a p h one c o n t i n u e s : "Over the t a b l e was c a r e f u l l y f l u n g a tanned and f r i n g e d h i d e w i t h t h e p r o f i l e o f an unknown I n d i a n maiden p a i n t e d on i t , and the r o c k i n g - c h a i r h e l d a l e a t h e r p i l l o w , done by p y r o g r a p h y , o f a g i r l i n a f e n c i n g costume w h i c h s e t o f f her d i s t r e s s i n g l y d a t e d f i g u r e V . ( p . 4 5 ) . " ^ F o r i n d i c a t i o n s o f t h i s , see pages 43-45. B i g L a n n i e went t o each of t h e l a d i e s who employed her and e x p l a i n e d t h a t she c o u l d n o t work f o r some w h i l e ; she must t a k e c a r e o f her grandson. The l a d i e s were s h a r p l y discommoded, a f t e r her s t e a d y y e a r s , but t h e y d r e s s e d t h e i r o u t r a g e i n shrugs and c o o l t o n e s . Each a r r i v e d , s e p a r a t e l y , a t t h e c o n c l u s i o n t h a t she had been too good t o B i g L a n n i e , and had been imposed upon, t h e r e f o r e . " H o n e s t l y , t h o s e n i g g e r s ! " each s a i d t o her f r i e n d s . "They're a l l a l i k e " (p. 361). . . "She went back t o t h e l a d i e s f o r whom she had worked, t o ask i f t h e y might n o t want her back a g a i n ; but t h e r e was l i t t l e hope i n h e r , a f t e r she had v i s i t e d t h e f i r s t one. W e l l , now, r e a l l y , s a i d the l a d i e s ; w e l l , now, r e a l l y " (p. 362). See a l s o pages 365 and 367 f o r Mrs. Ewing's 55 f e e l i n g s about B i g L a n n i e ' s a c t i o n s . " ^ F i t z g e r a l d ' s l e t t e r of March 11, 1938, t o F r a n c e s S c o t t F i t z g e r a l d , from t h e Garden o f A l l a h H o t e l , H o l l y w o o d , C a l i f o r n i a , as quoted i n F ; S c o t t F i t z g e r a l d , The L e t t e r s  o f F. S c o t t F i t z g e r a l d , ed. Andrew T u r n b u l l (New York: C h a r l e s S c r i b n e r s Sons, 1963), p. 25. The l e t t e r c o n t i n u e s "As t o knowing h e r , you do know h e r , but t h a t was i n t h e days when you were a l i t t l e weary o f my l i t e r a r y f r i e n d s . " 16 D o r o t h y P a r k e r , A f t e r Such P l e a s u r e s (New York: The S u n d i a l P r e s s , 1940), p. 85. The o n l y o t h e r t e x t u a l change i s t h e o m i s s i o n o f t h e c i r c u m f l e x on " y e l l o w p e b b l e c r e p e " on p. 330 o f t h e V i k i n g e d i t i o n (p. 89 i n P l e a s u r e s ) . D o rothy P a r k e r , "Mrs. C a r r i n g t o n and Mrs. Crane," The New Y o r k e r , 9 ( J u l y 15, 1933), 12. 56 Chapter I I : The V i c t i m s The s t o r i e s w h i c h comprise Chapter I I may a l s o be d i v i d e d i n t o two p a r t s . The f i r s t s e c t i o n i n c l u d e s "You Were P e r f e c t l y F i n e , " " C o u s i n L a r r y " and "Lady w i t h a Lamp"; l i k e S e c t i o n 1 o f Chapter I , i t d e a l s w i t h s p e c i f i c v i c t i m - m a n i p u l a t o r r e l a t i o n s h i p s . U n l i k e t h e s t o r i e s w h i c h make up t h a t s e c t i o n , however, t h e t h r e e d i s c u s s e d h ere a r e t o l d i n a h i g h l y c o m i c a l f a s h i o n . The c h a r a c t e r s who appear i n t h e second s e c t i o n o f t h i s c h a p t e r a r e v i c t i m s o f chance o r o f th e m s e l v e s , and are t h e r e f o r e p o r t r a y e d i n n o n - s p e c i f i c r e l a t i o n s h i p s . I n some o f t h e s e s t o r i e s t h i s d i s t i n c t i o n may seem b l u r r e d , because the s o - c a l l e d a n t a g o n i s t o r m a n i p u l a t o r i s p e r s o n i f i e d and u s u a l l y p r e s e n t , but he or she i s a shadowy f i g u r e r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f a c o n d i t i o n or a s t a t e o f mind r a t h e r t h a n an a c t u a l o p p r e s s o r . The v i c t i m s i n "A Telephone C a l l , " "Such a P r e t t y L i t t l e P i c t u r e , " "Too Bad," "The Banquet o f Crow" and " B i g B l o n d e " a r e a l l c h a r a c t e r t y p e s who d i s p l a y d i s c o u r a g i n g l y p r e d i c t a b l e b e h a v i o u r p a t t e r n s . H a ving been t r a p p e d f o r so l o n g i n t h e i r own s t i f l i n g s i t u a t i o n s , ..the.:mest':they~can':hppe; f or;;.is„a .'change: i n t h e 57 s econdary c h a r a c t e r s w i t h whom t h e y i n t e r a c t . The v a r i o u s t e c h n i q u e s o f r e p e t i t i o n P a r k e r uses i n the second s e t o f s t o r i e s ' s h o u l d be n o t e d , as t h e y c o n t r i b u t e much t o t h e r e a d e r ' s sense o f i n e v i t a b i l i t y . C o o l s e r i o u s n e s s i s no l o n g e r r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f any k i n d o f i n t i m a t e r e l a t i o n s h i p , as i t was i n Chapter I , S e c t i o n 1; i n s t e a d , i t has become a s i g n o f a l i e n a t i o n or estrangement between f i c t i o n a l i n d i v i d u a l s , and from our'own h i g h l y - v a u n t e d but perhaps e q u a l l y t h e o r e t i c a l sense o f r e a l i t y . - S e c t i o n 1-I n "Robert B e n c h l e y and D orothy P a r k e r : Punch and Judy i n F o r m a l D r e s s , " W i l l i a m Shanahan comments: The most b a s i c d i f f e r e n c e between B e n c h l e y and P a r k e r was t h e f a c t t h a t one w r o t e a l m o s t e x c l u s i v e l y about sex w h i l e the o t h e r p r a c t i c a l l y n e v er mentioned i t . L i k e Henry James, Do r o t h y P a r k e r f e l t t h a t the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the sexes was the most i m p o r t a n t human r e l a t i o n s h i p . U n l i k e James, she d i d n o t mask he r message w i t h mandarin p o l i t e n e s s and v e r b a l d u p l i c i t y - - t h e two t r i c k s o f w h i c h James was m a s t e r . I n s t e a d , Mrs. P a r k e r ' s young p e o p l e , l i k e t h o s e of W i l l i a m Dean H o w e l l s , a r e p i c t u r e d i n t h e mean and r e a l s u r r o u n d i n g s n a t i v e t o them.l The g i r l i n "You Were P e r f e c t l y F i n e " i s a l s o v e r y "mean and r e a l , " a s t a u n c h s u p p o r t e r o f the i d e a t h a t " A l l ' s f a i r i n l o v e and war." When she r e a l i s e s t h a t her b o y f r i e n d r e c a l l s n o t h i n g o f h i s a c t i o n s t h e h e a v i l y - l i q u o r e d n i g h t b e f o r e , t h e young woman c r e a t e s a m i d n i g h t t a x i r i d e t h r o u g h the p a r k , d u r i n g w h i c h he s u p p o s e d l y p r o p o s e d t o h e r : "Round and round and round the p a r k , " she s a i d . "Oh, and the t r e e s were s h i n i n g so i n t h e m o o n l i g h t . And you s a i d you n e v e r knew b e f o r e 58 t h a t you r e a l l y had a s o u l . " "Yes," he' s a i d . " I s a i d t h a t . That was me." "You s a i d such l o v e l y , l o v e l y t h i n g s , " she s a i d . "And I'd never known, a l l t h i s t i m e , how you had been f e e l i n g about me, and I'd never dared t o l e t you see how I f e l t about,you. And t h e n l a s t n i g h t - - o h , P e t e r dear, I t h i n k t h a t t a x i r i d e was t h e most i m p o r t a n t t h i n g t h a t ever happened t o us i n our l i v e s . " "Yes," he s a i d . " I guess i t must have been." "And we're'going t o be so happy," she s a i d . "Oh, I j u s t want t o t e l l everybody! But I don't know--I t h i n k maybe i t would be sweeter t o keep i t a l l t o o u r s e l v e s . " " I t h i n k i t would be," he s a i d (p. 153). The t i t l e o f t h e s t o r y comes from the g i r l ' s r e p e a t e d a s s u r a n c e s t h a t the young man's b e h a v i o u r had been a c c e p t a b l e , i f n o t exemplary. A l t h o u g h he would p r e f e r not t o b e l i e v e what she t e l l s him, he a c c e p t s t h e i d e a t h a t he might have been - capable*':.of a c t i n g i n t h e manner she has d e s c r i b e d , and he does n o t q u e s t i o n a n y t h i n g she says. That she c o u l d be making i t a l l up never seems t o e n t e r h i s mind. H i s l a c k of s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e makes him an u n w i t t i n g a c c o m p l i c e as w e l l as a v i c t i m , but as we can see from the p o r t r a i t of. t h e r u t h l e s s female m a n i p u l a t o r w h i c h P a r k e r has so s p a r i n g l y s k e t c h e d , h i s f a t e was i n e s c a p a b l e , and he w i l l become a t r u e v i c t i m i n and o f t h e m a r r i a g e w h i c h w i l l u n d o u b t e d l y f o l l o w q u i c k l y . I h t h i s s t o r y , as i n t h e n e x t two, the p l i g h t of t h e v i c t i m i s u n d e r s c o r e d by P a r k e r ' s c l o s e f o c u s on t h e m a n i p u l a t o r . She makes t h e r e a d e r work h a r d t o d e v e l o p and t o s o r t out h i s sympathies and r e a c t i o n s , knowing t h a t whatever v i c t i m he projects^w'iirjbe^more immediate t h a n any she--.might be a b l e t o d e s c r i b e - - a . s o r t o f r e v e r s e C o l e r i d g e 59 " s i g h t t o dream o f , n o t to t e l l . " " C o u s i n L a r r y " i s a m a s t e r p i e c e o f t h i s s o r t o f und e r s t a t e m e n t , w i t h b o t h i t s f i r s t and l a s t p a r a g r a p h s w o n d e r f u l l y i n v i d i o u s d e s c r i p t i o n s o f the female m a n i p u l a t o r who n a r r a t e s t h e s t o r y as a d r a m a t i c monologue. The g i r l does pose a genuine t h r e a t t o L i l a ' s m a r r i a g e , b u t t h e a u t h o r i m p l i e s t h a t thisnhas.come about."only because L i l a , and we, have p e r m i t t e d h e r t o do so. I n r e a l i t y she i s an i n e f f e c t i v e m e c h a n i c a l c o n t r i v a n c e , one w h i c h might e a s i l y be t a k e n a p a r t once we f i n d t h e r i g h t t o o l s : The young woman i n the crepe de Chine d r e s s p r i n t e d a l l over w i t h l i t t l e pagodas s e t amid g i a n t c o r n f l o w e r s f l u n g one knee atop the o t h e r and surveyed, w i t h an e n v i a b l e contentment, t h e 5 t i p o f her s c r o l l e d g r e e n s a n d a l . Then, i n a l i k e happy calm, she i n s p e c t e d her f i n g e r n a i l s of so t h i c k and g l i s t e n i n g a r e d t h a t i t seemed as i f she b u t r e c e n t l y had completed t e a r i n g an ox a p a r t w i t h h er naked hands. Then she dropped 10 her c h i n a b r u p t l y t o her c h e s t and b u s i e d h e r s e l f among t h e man-made c u r l s , sharp and d r y as s h a v i n g s , a l o n g t h e back o f her neck; and a g a i n she appeared t o be wrapped i n cozy s a t i s f a c t i o n . Then she l i g h t e d a f r e s h c i g a r e t t e and seemed t o f i n d i t , 15 l i k e a l l about h e r , good. Then she went ..right on w i t h a l l she had been s a y i n g b e f o r e (p. 333) . . . The young woman i n the p r i n t e d c r e p e de Chine d r e s s removed her dead c i g a r e t t e from i t s p a s t e b o a r d h o l d e r and seemed, as she d i d so, t o f i n d i n c r e a s e d 20 enjoyment i n the f a m i l i a r s i g h t o f her r i c h - h u e d f i n g e r n a i l s . Then she took from her l a p a case of g o l d or some substa n c e near i t , and i n a minute m i r r o r scanned h er f a c e as c a r e f u l l y as i f i t were v e r s e . She k n i t her brows, she drew h e r upper 25 e y e l i d s n e a r l y t o t h o s e below them, she t u r n e d h er head as one e x p r e s s i n g r e g r e t f u l n e g a t i o n , she moved her mouth l a t e r a l l y i n the manner o f a semi-t r o p i c a l f i s h ; and when a l l t h a t was done, she seemed even c o o l e r i n c o n f i d e n c e of w e l l - b e i n g . 30 Then she l i g h t e d a f r e s h c i g a r e t t e and appeared t o f i n d t h a t , t o o , i m p e c c a b l e . Then she went r i g h t on over a l l she had been s a y i n g b e f o r e (p. 338). 60 In these paragraphs, as i n the passage from "Song of the S h i r t , 1941," r e p e t i t i o n and seemingly non-evaluative understatement are two important s t y l i s t i c techniques Parker employs, but we'are also struck by her masterful use of powerful verbs and modif iers . The f i r s t phrase of the f i r s t sentence catches our a t tent ion immediately: the " l i t t l e pagodas" seem very incongruous among a l l those "giant cornflowers" ( l ines two and three) . The g i r l ' s shoe i s described i n exaggerated d e t a i l , which b e l i t t l e s her very n i c e l y . The shoe i s not only "green," but " s c r o l l e d " as w e l l ( l ine f i v e ) , and she admires only i t s toe. The image of t h i s "sweet young th ing " rending an ox from end to end i s i n t e n s i f i e d by the uncommon word order "as i f she but recent ly had" ( l ines eight thfough:nine) , instead of the more conventional "as i f she had but r e c e n t l y . " In the next sentence she i s l ikened to a l i t t l e animal, perhaps a hamster or a guinea p i g , when the author has her "[busy] her se l f " among the "shavings" of her c u r l s , and the fact that these cur l s are fa l se sustains the sense of contrivance and a r t i f i c i a l i t y which runs throughout the passage. Her overwhelming sense of s e l f - s a t i s f a c t i o n i s repeated and emphasized by the always-modified expressions of her quiet de l ight : "enviable contentment" ( l ine four) , " l i k e happy calm" ( l i n e s i x ) , "cozy s a t i s f a c t i o n " ( l i n e t h i r t e e n ) , the fact that her new c igare t te i s B i b l i c a l l y , " l i k e a l l about her, good" ( l ine f i f t e e n ; a l l i t a l i c s mine). This o v e r - i n f l a t i o n strengthens the sense of a f f ec ta t ion so 61 important to the a u t h o r ' s p o i n t . In both .paragraphs , a l l the sentences except the f i r s t beg in w i t h " t h e n , " whose sound i s su s t a ined through the f i r s t paragraph by the rhymed " a g a i n " ( l i n e t w e l v e ) , and i n the second by "when" ( l i n e t w e n t y - e i g h t ) . The o n l y e x c e p t i o n i s thes t h i r d ..sentence i n paragraph two; but even t h e r e , the " she" t i e s , us i n w i t h the i n t r o d u c t o r y "The" s . The f i r s t f i v e words of both f i r s t sentences are i d e n t i c a l , as are the e n t i r e l a s t sentences of both ,paragraphs , w i t h a s l i g h t d e v i a t i o n i n the s i x t h word: i n the f i r s t paragraph i t i s " w i t h " ( l i n e s i x t e e n ) , w h i l e i n the l a s t paragraph i t i s " o v e r " ( l i n e t h i r t y - t w o ) . Thus the s t r u c t u r a l r e p e t i t i o n and i n t e r n a l rhyme support the e v o c a t i o n of the g i r l ' s s ingle-mindedness as e f f e c t i v e l y as the words themselves , and the c o n t i n u a t i o n of the idea suggested by the end of the f i r s t paragraph i s borne out a t the end of the s t o r y : "Then she went r i g h t on [wi th/over ] a l l she had been saying b e f o r e . " In the s i n g l e e x c e p t i o n , which begins on l i n e t w e n t y - f o u r , " she" i s repeated f i v e t imes i n f i f t y words, always as the sub ject of a noun-verb-e tc . c l ause c o n s t r u c t i o n , thereby serving'-tjie-"'same^.-function Through the course of the s t o r y , however, a so r t of decomposi t ion has set i n . The second paragraph i s not as p o s i t i v e as the f i r s t . The young woman's dress i s now s imply " p r i n t e d " ( l i n e seventeen); her c i g a r e t t e i s "dead" ( l i n e e i g h t e e n ) . Parker c a r e f u l l y c a l l s our a t t e n t i o n to the f a c t that i t s f i l t e r i s "pas teboard" ( l i n e e i g h t e e n ) , 62 p o i n t i n g out i t s cheapness e v e n m o r e th a n the a f f e c t a t i o n and the a r t i f i c i a l i t y o f i t s use, and she u n d e r s c o r e s t h e concept a g a i n by r e m a r k i n g i r o n i c a l l y t h a t t h e g i r l ' s compact i s " g o l d o r some substa n c e n e a r i t " ( l i n e t w e n t y - t w o ) . The g i r l p u n n i n g l y "T,scans] h er f a c e as c a r e f u l l y as i f i t were v e r s e " ( l i n e s t w e n t y - t h r e e through, t w e n t y - f o u r ) : t h a t i t i s n o t becomes i m m e d i a t e l y apparent t o t h e r e a d e r when her method o f s c a n s i o n i s d e t a i l e d a t t h e b e g i n n i n g o f t h e n e x t sentence ( C a l l i n g her a " s e m i - t r o p i c a l f i s h " [ l i n e s t w enty-seven t h r o u g h t w e n t y - e i g h t ; i t a l i c s m i n e ] ' i s a most e f f e c t i v e d e s c e n t i n t o b a t h o s ) . The p o e t r y metaphor i s c l e v e r l y c a r r i e d out i n the t e x t . I n t h e second p a r a g r a p h , P a r k e r makes much use o f a l l i t e r a t i o n and assonance--"some s u b s t a n c e " ( l i n e twenty-two) , "minute m i r r o r " ( l i n e s twenty-two t h r o u g h twenty-t h r e e ) , "moved her mouth" ( l i n e t w e n t y - s e v e n ) , "she seemed even c o o l e r i n c o n f i d e n c e " ( l i n e : t w e n t y - e i g h t t h r o u g h twenty-n i n e ) , " t h o s e below" ( l i n e t w e n t y - f i v e ) and " e x p r e s s i n g r e g r e t f u l n e g a t i o n " ( l i n e t w e n t y - s i x ) - - t e c h n i q u e s she d i d n o t use a t a l l i n t h e f i r s t p a r a g r a p h . They c a l l our a t t e n t i o n t o t h e c o n t r i v a n c e and a r t i f i c i a l i t y o f f o r m a l p o e s i e , p e r m i t t i n g the a u t h o r t o a g a i n v r e l a t e t h e s e t r a i t s t o t he g i r l , ( a n d a t t h e same t i m e , perhaps, t o g e n t l y poke f u n a t her own f a c i l i t y i n j u g g l i n g them). The young woman has alm o s t f i n i s h e d b r e a k i n g up L i l a and L a r r y ' s a l r e a d y - s h a k y m a r r i a g e . I t was p r o b a b l y n o t v e r y s t e a d y t o s t a r t w i t h , s i n c e L i l a i s an o l d e r woman 63 (p. 336) whom L a r r y had m a r r i e d f o r money (p. 337), but th e c o u p l e might have g o t a l o n g i f th e y had been l e f t a l o n e . The g i r l i s always t h e r e , however, always r e a d y t o "rescue":/Cousin L a r r y from a dragon o f a w i f e who goes to bed a t t e n o ' c l o c k and who f o r e v e r wants t o know why everyone e l s e i s l a u g h i n g . She and L a r r y go out t o g e t h e r (pp. 334, 337), he c a l l s h e r " L i t t l e S w eetheart" " j u s t t h e way he.always d i d " (p. 335), and j o k i n g l y sends h er p i n k c h i f f o n underwear " w i t h 'Mais 1'amour v i e n d f a ' embroidered on them i n b l a c k " (p. 337), but she sees n o t h i n g wrong i n t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p , and i s u n s y m p a t h e t i c toward L i l a f o r b e i n g u p s e t . I n a l l l i k e l i h o o d t h i s b e h a v i o u r w i l l c o n t i n u e u n t i l L i l a and L a r r y s e p a r a t e . We can h y p o t h e s i s e t h a t L i l a would be l e f t w i t h n o t h i n g , and we f e e l c e r t a i n t h a t . L a r r y would never r e a l i z e how t h e breakup had been e n g i n e e r e d . The v i c t i m o f t h e "Lady w i t h a Lamp" i s a woman named Mona, and t h e woman m a n i p u l a t i n g her i s o s t e n s i b l y h er b e s t f r i e n d . V i s i t i n g Mona as she (Convalesces from .what she says i s a nervous breakdown, t h e woman i s i n t e r e s t e d o n l y i n f o r c i n g Mona t o admit t h a t she has i n r e a l i t y had an a b o r t i o n , and she t r i e s e v e r y s t r a t e g y she can p o s s i b l y t h i n k 2 o f t o b r i n g a b o u t . t h e c o n f e s s i o n . "Lady w i t h a Lamp" i s a d r a m a t i c monologue. A l t h o u g h t h e r e i s no d e s c r i p t i o n a p a r t from t h e woman's comments on Mona's r e a c t i o n s , we f e e l i m m e d i a t e l y t h a t we a r e i n the room w i t h the two women, w a t c h i n g Mona c r i n g e under her " f r i e n d " ' s r e l e n t l e s s a t t a c k s , and our h e a r t s go out t o h e r : \ 64 W e l l , Mona! W e l l , you poor s i c k t h i n g , you! Ah, you l o o k so l i t t l e and -white and l i t t l e , you do, l y i n g t h e r e i n t h a t g r e a t b i g bedT" T h a t ' s what you do--go and l o o k so c h i l d l i k e and p i t i f u l nobody'd have the h e a r t t o s c o l d you. And I ought t o s c o l d you, Mona. Oh, yes, I s h o u l d so, t o o . Never l e t t i n g me know you were i l l . Never a word t o your o l d e s t f r i e n d . D a r l i n g , you might have known I'd u n d e r s t a n d , no m a t t e r what you d i d . What do I mean? W e l l , what do you mean what do I mean, Mona? Of c o u r s e , i f you'd r a t h e r h o t t a l k about--Not even t o your o l d e s t f r i e n d . A l l I. wanted t o say was you might have known t h a t I'm always f o r you, no m a t t e r what happens. I do admit, sometimes i t ' s a l i t t l e h a r d f o r me t o u n d e r s t a n d how on e a r t h you ever got i n t o s u c h - - w e l l . Goodness knows I don't want t o nag you now, when you're sot s i c k (p. 246). The woman manages t o work Mona i n t o h y s t e r i c s (p. 253) w i t h -out g e t t i n g a c o n c r e t e a d m i s s i o n o f g u i l t , b ut we can be f a i r l y s u r e t h a t Mona's " c o n f e s s i o n " w i l l be a l l over town by n i g h t f a l l . I n t h e t h r e e s t o r i e s we have d i s c u s s e d so f a r , a l l t h e v i c t i m s have been named, but a l l t h e m a n i p u l a t o r s have done t h e i r d i r t y work anonymously, c o n t i n u i n g t h e t r a d i t i o n s t a r t e d with,"Arrangement i n B l a c k and White" and "From t h e D i a r y o f a New Yo r k Lady." Once more the t e c h n i q u e has been u s e d t o make t h e s e women Everyman, one o f the a u t h o r ' s main s t a t e m e n t s . Two o f t h e v i c t i m s a r e women; the men i n v o l v e d a re i n e f f e c t u a l and o f no r e a l consequence t o t h e a c t i o n . They a r e p r i z e tokens w h i c h the women s h u f f l e around i n t h e i r l i t t l e games, t o be s a c r i f i c e d w i t h o u t qualms or c a r r i e d o f f i n t r i u m p h a n t g l o r y , They seem t o have no i n t r i n s i c v a l u e : Mona i s c a s u a l l y t o l d t h a t h er inamorato o f t h r e e y e a r s s h o u l d be i m m e d i a t e l y f o r g o t t e n , and t h a t t h e b e s t t h i n g f o r her t o do now would be t o g e t 65 married--to whom seems immaterial. The paradox becomes more complicated when we note that a l l the victims we have met (with the exception of Peter) seem to be cognizant of the r e l a t i v e worthlessness of any involvement with the male sex, but s t i l l l e t i t ' r u l e t h e i r l i v e s a l l the same. As i s the case with irony, what i s said i s not necessarily what is meant to be understood. -Section 2-The relationship between men and women was Parker's hobby-horse: the main c r i t i c i s m of her poetry i s that there she beat i t to death. In these stories, however, she handles her theme adeptly, changing leads as smoothly/-: and c o o l l y as a champion dressage r i d e r . Here chance becomes the manipulator, along with misplaced love, the general purposelessness of l i f e , and a God who must prove to be either disinterested or malevolent--should one be foolish enough to xeapfioe cor nge^ ufeJs*: 'a"ftyi.Ug.©ads ^ t-'-a-M. . With the exception of one r e l a t i n g to the agonies of courtship, a l l the stories deal with unhappy marriages i n various stages of d i s i l l u s i o n and di s s o l u t i o n . A l l the main characters are losers. The stories have been arranged to form a proto-re l a t i o n s h i p . The f i r s t , "A Telephone C a l l , " concerns a young woman waiting desperately to hear from her lover; the second, "Such a Pretty L i t t l e Picture," i s a short description of an unhappy marriage. "Too Bad";Iand "The 66 Banquet o f Crow" d e a l w i t h men who'have t a k e n a c t i o n to amend t h e i r s i t u a t i o n s , ' a n d what t h i s a c t i o n does t o t h e i r w i v e s , w h i l e " I L i v e on Your V i s i t s " shows the e f f e c t o f d i v o r c e on a b i t t e r woman who had c e n t r e d her l i f e on a m a r r i a g e , and who s t i l l r e f u s e s t o l e t go o f i t y e a r s l a t e r . The l a s t s t o r y , " B i g ' B l o n d e , " g i v e s us t h e c a p s u l e h i s t o r y o f a woman who d i d e v e r y t h i n g f o r companionship and p o p u l a r i t y , o n l y t o f i n d out when i t was too l a t e t h a t t h e s e mean l e s s t h a n n o t h i n g when r e l a t e d t o the l a r g e r r e a l i t i e s o f e x i s t e n c e . A g a i n P a r k e r ' s w o r k i n g p r e m i s e i s t h a t t r u e h a p p i n e s s i s u n r e a l and t h e r e f o r e u n a t t a i n a b l e . People.must s t r u g g l e , e i t h e r because t h e y f e e l e x i s t e n t i a l l y honour-bound t o do so, or because t h e y a r e too s t u b b o r n l y , s t u p i d l y human t o do o t h e r w i s e , but t h e y must a l s o . r e a l i s e from the o u t s e t t h a t t h e y can n e v e r w i n . T h i s v i e w o f l i f e i s c l e a r l y e x p r e s s e d i n t h e monologue "A Telephone C a l l , " a f u t i l e p r a y e r t o an i n e x o r a b l e God f o r a t e l e p h o n e c a l l w h i c h w i l l n e ver come. The s t o r y i s a l s o a f i n e example o f t h e t r a g i - c o m i c " d o u b l e v i s i o n " mentioned i n the I n t r o d u c t i o n : Ah, don't l e t my p r a y e r seem too l i t t l e t o You, God. You s i t up t h e r e , so w h i t e and o l d , w i t h a l l t h e a n g e l s about You and t h e s t a r s s l i p p i n g by. And I come t o You w i t h a p r a y e r about a t e l e p h o n e c a l l . Ah, don't l a u g h , God. You see, You don't know how i t f e e l s . You're so s a f e , t h e r e on Your' t h r o n e , w i t h the b l u e s w i r l i n g under You. . N o t h i n g can t o u c h You; no one can t w i s t Your h e a r t i n h i s hands. T h i s i s s u f f e r i n g , God, t h i s i s bad, bad s u f f e r i n g . Won't You h e l p me? F o r Your Son's sake, h e l p me. You s a i d You would do whatever was asked o f You i n H i s name. Oh, .God, i n t h e name o f T h i n e o n l y 67 beloved Son, Jesus C h r i s t , our Lord, l e t him telephone me now. I must stop t h i s . I mustn't be th i s way. Look. Suppose a young man says h e ' l l c a l l a g i r l up, and then something happens, and he doesn't. That i s n ' t so t e r r i b l e , i s i t ? Why, i t ' s going on a l l over the world, r i g h t t h i s minute. Oh, what do I care what's going on a l l over the world? Why can't that telephone ring? (p. 120). We want to laugh at the g i r l ' s r i d i c u l o u s behaviour, but we are prevented from doing so by the knowledge that we have a l l acted in'.the same manner. That the g i r l perceives the absurdity of her s i t u a t i o n does l i t t l e to make i t more bearable for her; however, i t does make i t more poignant, and allows us to indulge our emotions wi th less defensive g u i l t than we might otherwise f e e l . Although we f e e l sorry for her, our involvement i s abstracted enough', so that we can enjoy the humour of the story while s t i l l r e a l i s i n g the author's underlying f r u s t r a t i o n s . Parker ' s anger.:runsibhr.oughouttbhessbory. "Her: obser-vations on the apparently incomprehensible code of male behaviour are given wi th only one comment, a bewailing of the inescapable game: " I know you shouldn't keep telephoning them--I know they don't l i k e that . When you do that , they know you are th inking about, them and wanting them, and that makes them hate you" (p. 119). She continues, " I wonder why they hate you, as soon as they are sure of you. I should think i t would be so sweet to be sure" (p. 123): . . . I don't think he even knows how he makes me f e e l . I wish he could know, without my t e l l i n g him. They don't l i k e you to t e l l them they've made you cry . They don't l i k e you to t e l l them 68 you're unhappy because of them. I f you do, t h e y t h i n k you're p o s s e s s i v e and e x a c t i n g . And t h e n they h a t e you. They h a t e you whenever you say a n y t h i n g you r e a l l y t h i n k . You always have t o keep p l a y i n g l i t t l e games. Oh, I thought we d i d n ' t have t o ; I thought t h i s was so b i g I c o u l d say whatever I meant. I guess you c a n ' t , e v e r . I guess t h e r e i s n ' t e v er a n y t h i n g b i g enough f o r t h a t (pp. 121-122). The tone o f the s t o r y changes two p a r a g r a p h s l a t e r . Now, i n s t e a d of p l e a d i n g t h a t her l o v e r c a l l h e r , t h e g i r l p r a y s t h a t she w i l l be a b l e t o keep from t e l e p h o n i n g him. She goes back t o her o r i g i n a l r e q u e s t o n l y i n the l a s t two p a r a g r a p h s : God, a r e n ' t You r e a l l y g o i n g t o l e t him c a l l me? Are You s u r e , God? C o u i d n ' t You p l e a s e r e l e n t ? C o u l d n ' t You? I don't even ask You t o l e t him t e l e p h o n e me t h i s m i n ute, God: o n l y l e t him do i t i n a l i t t l e w h i l e . I ' l l count f i v e hundred by f i v e s . I ' l l do i t so s l o w l y , a n d s o " f a i r l y . I f he h a s n ' t t e l e p h o n e d t h e n , I ' l l c a l l him. I w i l l . Oh, p l e a s e , dear God, dear k i n d God, my b l e s s e d F a t h e r i n Heaven, l e t him c a l l b e f o r e t h e n . P l e a s e , God. P l e a s e . F i v e , t e n , f i f t e e n , twenty, t w e n t y - f i v e , t h i r t y , t h i r t y - f i v e . . . . (p. 124). W i l l she b r e a k down and t e l e p h o n e him. now, or w i l l she t r y t o h o l d o u t , o n l y t o g i v e i n a t some i n d e f i n i t e f u t u r e p o i n t ? iWe know t h e man w i l l n o t c a l l , even i f the g i r l cannot admit i t . The outcome o f t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p i s no l o n g e r i n doubt. The o n l y unanswered q u e s t i o n i s one of t i m e . I n You M i g h t .as W e l l L i v e , John K e a t s summarises th e p l o t o f "Such a P r e t t y L i t t l e P i c t u r e " t o p r ove t h a t i n 1922 P a r k e r was a l r e a d y w r i t i n g t h e " s l i c e o f l i f e " n a r r a t i v e s w h i c h would p r o v e t o be so p o p u l a r i n t h e t h i r t i e s . He does i t i n o r d e r to. show t h a t she was a c t u a l l y a s e r i o u s 69 writer, although he admits that "Dorothy Parker would have rather shortly denied i t , for i t was a point of honor among the Algonquin group not to take themselves seriously 3 as creative a r t i s t s . " Keats summarises the story this way: A man is seen clipping his suburban hedge while his wife and child watch from the porch of their house. The man is bored by his pointless city job, bored by his vapid suburb, bored by the hedge he is clipping, and more than bored by his nagging and domineering wife and their dull blob of a daughter. He would like to say, suddenly, "To hell with i t , " and vanish. But he has no one to whom he can say this--that i s , no one who would understand him i f he did say i t , for he has no friends. In the kind of l i f e he leads between office and suburb, he has only business acquaintances. There is no possibility of his forming friendships in his style of l i f e , of sharing anything important with anyone else. S t i l l , he footlessly dreams, as he clips his hedge, that perhaps a few years from now he might find an opportunity to say "to h e l l with i t " to someone, and to walk away from his empty l i f e and embark upon a new one. Two neighbors, seeing him at work, and seeing his wife and child watching him from the porch, regard the tableau to be such a pretty l i t t l e picture of suburban success.^ The precis is relatively accurate; however, the feeling which Parker attributes to Mr. Wheelock, the main character, is more than boredom. It is the "quiet desperation" with which Thoreau suggests most of us struggle through our lives. Adelaide Wheelock i s the kind of woman who sews buttons on shirts before they are worn,^ who buys her daughter's clothes too large so that she can grown into them "--an expectation which seemed never to be realized, for her skirts were always too long, and the shoulders of her l i t t l e dresses came half-way down to her thin elbows," and who makes jokes about her husband's lack of efficiency as a man-70 about-the-house. Wheelock's emotion f o r h i s daughter a l s o goes beyond boredom: "He had never f e l t any f i e r c e t h r i l l s o f f a t h e r - l o v e f o r the c h i l d . . . . from the f i r s t he had n e a r l y acknowledged t o h i m s e l f t h a t he d i d n o t l i k e S i s t e r • , 8 as a p e r s o n . o Mr. wheelock's dream o f w a l k i n g o f f i n t o t h e s u n s e t , never t o r e t u r n , stems from a s t o r y he had r e a d , i n w h i c h an unnamed s u b u r b a n i t e d i d p r e c i s e l y t h a t . The "Oh^ h e l l " he gave t h e c o n d u c t o r o f t h e 5:17 out o f Grand C e n t r a l was the l a s t anyone had ever h e a r d o f him. The i d e a a p p e a l s enormously t o Mr. Wheelock, but t h e r e a r e l a r g e o b s t a c l e s t o be overcome b e f o r e he can t a k e a c t i o n . P e o p l e would n o t u n d e r s t a n d ; he has r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s toward h i s f a m i l y ; he cannot f i n d t h e p r o p e r p e r s o n to say "Oh, h e l l " t o , and he l a c k s the n e r v e t o l e a v e h i s w i f e . However...... . Twenty y e a r s , he thought. The man i n t h e s t o r y went t h r o u g h w i t h i t f o r twenty y e a r s . He must have been a man a l o n g around f o r t y - f i v e , most l i k e l y . Mr. Wheelock was t h i r t y - s e v e n . E i g h t y e a r s . I t ' s a l o n g t i m e , e i g h t . y e a r s i s . You c o u l d e a s i l y g e t to say t h a t f i n a l "Oh, h e l l , " even t o A d e l a i d e , i n e i g h t y e a r s . I t p r o b a b l y wouldn't t a k e more th a n f o u r f o r you t o know t h a t you c o u l d do i t . No, not more t h a n two. . . .9 We can be f a i r l y s u r e Mr. Wheelock w i l l n e ver be a b l e t o t a k e t h a t f i n a l s t e p , but we cannot be c e r t a i n . A f t e r a l l , b o t h E r n e s t Weldon and Guy A l l e n dropped out of t h e i r m a r r i a g e s , much, t o the s u r p r i s e and dismay o f t h e i r f r i e n d s , and t o t h e e s p e c i a l dismay o f Maida A l l e n . The Weldons are t h e main c h a r a c t e r s o f ''Too Bad," whose t i t l e i s t h e p h r a s e w h i c h everyone e x c e p t t h e two most 71 d i r e c t l y i n v o l v e d u s e s t o c h a r a c t e r i z e t h e i r m a r i t a l s i t u a -t i o n . What o t h e r s t h i n k i s g i v e n r e l a t i v e i m p o r t a n c e by i t s e n c l o s u r e o f t h e d e s c r i p t i o n o f t h e c o u p l e ' s l i f e ' .. t o g e t h e r : t h i s t e c h n i q u e h e i g h t e n s o u r a w a r e n e s s , r e m i n d i n g u s t h a t t h i n g s a r e v e r y s e l d o m what t h e y seem, and t h a t m a r r i a g e i s a v e r y p r i v a t e a f f a i r . L a c k o f c o m m u n i c a t i o n was t h e m a i n r e a s o n f o r t h e f a i l u r e o f t h e W e l d o n ' s m a r r i a g e . They l i v e d i n a n a p a r t m e n t t h e y b o t h h a t e d because n e i t h e r had had t h e i n t e r e s t n o r t h e e n e r g y t o t a k e a s t a n d a g a i n s t i t ( p . 173) ; t h e y engaged i n m e a n i n g l e s s r i t u a l s r a t h e r t h a n t a l k t o e a c h o t h e r as i n d i v i d u a l s ( i b i d . , p p . 176,; 178) ; t h e y p u t up w i t h e a c h o t h e r ' s a n n o y i n g h a b i t s w i t h o u t , comment u n t i l t h e i s s u e s were b l o w n o u t o f a l l p r o p o r t i o n ( p p . 165, 176, 179, 180) . As M r s . Weldon s a y s (pi: 178), " s h e f o u n d she s i m p l y c o u l d n ' t make t h e e f f o r t " : " W e l l , what have y o u been d o i n g w i t h y o u r s e l f t o d a y ? " he i n q u i r e d . She had been e x p e c t i n g t h e q u e s t i o n . She had p l a n n e d b e f o r e he came i n , how she w o u l d t e l l h i m a l l t h e l i t t l e e v e n t s o f h e r d a y - - h o w t h e woman i n t h e g r o c e r ' s shop had had an argument w i t h t h e c a s h i e r , and how D e l i a had t r i e d o u t a new s a l a d f o r l u n c h w i t h ' . . b u t m o d e r a t e s u c c e s s , and how A l i c e M a r s h a l l had come t o t e a and i t was q u i t e t r u e t h a t Norma M a t t h e w s was g o i n g t o have a n o t h e r b a b y . She had woven them i n t o a l i v e l y l i t t l e n a r r a t i v e , c a r e f u l l y c h o o s i n g amus ing p h r a s e s o f d e s c r i p t i o n ; had f e l t t h a t she was g o i n g t o t e l l i t w e l l and w i t h s p i r i t , and t h a t he m i g h t l a u g h a t t h e a c c o u n t o f t h e o c c u r r e n c e a t t h e g r o c e r ' s . But now, as she c o n s i d e r e d i t , i t seemed t o h e r a l o n g , d u l l s t o r y . She had n o t t h e e n e r g y t o b e g i n i t . And he was a l r e a d y s m o o t h i n g o u t ' h i s p a p e r . " O h , n o t h i n g , " she s a i d , w i t h a gay l i t t l e l a u g h . . " D i d y o u have a n i c e d a y ? " 72 "Why--" ..-he began. He had had some i d e a o f t e l l i n g her how he had f i n a l l y p ut t h r o u g h t h a t D e t r o i t t h i n g , and how t i c k l e d J.G. had seemed t o be about i t . But h i s i n t e r e s t waned, even as he s t a r t e d t o speak. B e s i d e s , she was engrossed i n b r e a k i n g o f f a l o o s e t h r e a d f rom the wool f r i n g e o f one o f the p i l l o w s b e s i d e h e r . "Oh, p r e t t y f a i r , " he s a i d (p. 174). N e i t h e r Grace n o r E r n e s t Weldon has t h i s p r o b lem w i t h o t h e r p e o p l e (p. 1 7 7 f ) ; i t i s r e s t r i c t e d t o t h e i r r e l a t i o n -s h i p w i t h each o t h e r . B o t h seem t o a c c e p t t h e l i k e l i h o o d t h a t t h e i r s e p a r a t i o n w i l l be permanent. Mr. Weldon has moved out t o h i s c l u b , and Mrs. Weldon p l a n s t o r e n t a s m a l l f l a t when she r e t u r n s from t h e c o u n t r y (p. 170). Mr. Weldon's s i s t e r w i l l t a k e over t h e i r apartment, w h i c h s t i l l has f o u r y e a r s and t h r e e months on i t s f i v e - y e a r l e a s e (p. 173). The Weldons a r e v i c t i m s of themselves as much as o f each o t h e r , but t h e y a r e f o r the most p a r t v i c t i m s o f t h a t a s p e c t of l i f e w h i c h p a r a d o x i c a l l y a l l o w s f o r no r e a l v i c t i m a t a l l . There can be no c a t e g o r i c a l blame l a i d on e i t h e r s i d e : t h e s e t h i n g s j u s t seem t o happen. Maida A l l e n , i n "The Banquet ofJCrow," i s i n c a p a b l e o f a c c e p t i n g such a h y p o t h e s i s . Her husband's,.sudden and u n e x p l a i n e d d e p a r t u r e has her be h a v i n g i n a t e d i o u s l y f r a n t i c manner u n t i l she meets Dr. M a r j o r i e Langham, a p s y c h o l o g i s t . The d o c t o r a s s u r e s her t h a t Guy A l l e n ' s p r o b l e m i s " j u s t the t r a d i t i o n a l case o f t e m p o r a r i l y souped-up n e r v e s and the r o u t i n e change i n m e t a b o l i s m , " " ^ and t h a t he s h o u l d be r e t u r n i n g t o h i s senses, sand t o h i s w i f e , f o r t h w i t h . But not w i t h o u t the p r o p e r amount o f r e p e n t a n c e , vows Maida, 73 encouraged by h e r d o c t o r . Guy must f i r s t r e a l i s e t h a t e v e r y t h i n g was h i s f a u l t , and t h e n Maida might condescend t o t a k e him b a c k - - e v e n t u a l l y . , As.- P a r k e r '.mates*:. " I t was a b i g f a c t o r i n Dr. Langham's su c c e s s t h a t she had t h e a b i l i t y t o make wet s t r a w s seem l i k e s t u r d y l o g s t o the n e a r l y submerged."''"''' Guy A l l e n n ever does come back t o h i s w i f e . He s t o p s i n one e v e n i n g f o r a s u i t c a s e he needs; he i s l e a v i n g f o r San F r a n c i s c o on b u s i n e s s t h e n e x t morning, and i s n o t c e r t a i n how l o n g he w i l l be gone. Maida t r i e s t o f o r c e a c o n f r o n t a t i o n , but Guy r e f u s e s t o t a k e t h e b a i t : . . . " ' I don't want t o do t h i s any more, Maida. I'm t h r o u g h . ' Do you r e a l l y f e e l t h a t was a p r e t t y t h i n g t o say t o me? I t seemed t o me r a t h e r a b r u p t , a f t e r e l e v e n y e a r s . " "No. I t wasn't a b r u p t , " he s a i d . " I ' d been s a y i n g i t t o you f o r s i x o f t h o s e e l e v e n y e a r s . " " I n ever h e a r d you," she s a i d . "Yes, you d i d , my d e a r , " he s a i d . "You i n t e r p r e t e d i t as a c r y o f 'Wolf,' but you h e a r d me. " C o u l d i t be p o s s i b l y t h a t you had been p l a n n i n g t h i s d r a m a t i c e x i t f o r s i x y e a r s ? " she s a i d . "Not p l a n n i n g , " , h e s a i d . " J u s t t h i n k i n g . I had no p l a n s . Not even when I spoke th o s e doubt-l e s s i l l - c h o s e n words o f f a r e w e l l . " . . . . . . "Were you t h a t unhappy?" "Yes, I was, r e a l l y , " he s a i d . "You needn't have made me say i t . You knew i t . " "Why were you unhappy?" she s a i d . "Because two p e o p l e c a n ' t go on and on and on, d o i n g the same t h i n g s y e a r a f t e r y e a r , when o n l y one o f them l i k e s d o i n g them," he s a i d , "and s t i l l be happy." "Do you t h i n k I can be happy, l i k e t h i s ? " she s a i d . " I do," he s a i d . " I t h i n k you w i l l . I w i s h t h e r e were some p r e t t i e r way o f d o i n g i t , but I t h i n k t h a t a f t e r a w h i l e - - a n d not a l o n g w h i l e , e i t h e r - - y o u w i l l be b e t t e r t h a n you've ever been." 74 "Oh, you think so?" she sa id . " I see, you can ' t bel ieve I'm a sens i t ive person." "That 's not for the lack of your t e l l i n g me--eleven year 's wor th , " he sa id .12 "The Banquet of ; Crow," which appeared i n The New Yorker i n December 1957, i s the l a s t story Dorothy Parker ever published. I f we contrast i t with, one of the f i r s t , "Such a Pret ty L i t t l e P i c t u r e , " we can see that her career 13 has come a strange f u l l c i r c l e . She s tar t s and ends wi th the story of an unhappy marriage, and Guy A l l e n might e a s i l y have said "Oh, h e l l " as he slammed the door on h i s way out. I t took t h i r t y - f i v e years., for Parker, but i t f i n a l l y happened. There are echoes of other s tor ie s here too, such as "The Last Tea," i n which the woman l i e s about being chased and i n great demand. Refusing to admit her lone l ines s , to expla in how she r e a l l y f e e l s , she hides behind a w a l l of braggadocio which she hopes w i l l stand u n t i l her man ei ther cracks, jor goes too far away to hear i t crumble. I t would not be d i f f i c u l t to see the Maida A l l e n of "The Banquet of Crow" develop into the Mrs. Tennant of " I L ive on Your V i s i t s . " Mrs. A l l e n i s a v i c t i m of her society (see pages 39-40 of the text) and of her over ly-s i m p l i s t i c doctor, but she i s above a l l a v i c t i m of her se l f . She refuses to face issues squarely, pre fer r ing to. l i v e i n a world of dreams and destruct ive s e l f - p i t y instead. L ike Mrs. Tennant, Maida A l l e n i s "too s ens i t i ve " to acknowledge r e a l i t y : l i k e Mrs. Tennant, Maida A l l e n i s 75 her own w o r s t enemy. In her "C o n s t a n t Reader" column o f October 22, 1927, P a r k e r n o t e d t h a t "The a f f a i r between Margot A s q u i t h and Margot A s q u i t h w i l l l i v e as one o f t h e p r e t t i e s t l o v e s t o r i e s i n a l l l i t e r a t u r e " (p. 456). To thos e f a m i l i a r w i t h the Mrs. Tennant o f " I L i v e on Your V i s i t s , " i t comes as no g r e a t s u r p r i s e , t h e n , t o l e a r n t h a t Tennant was Margot A s q u i t h 1 s maiden name. Whether P a r k e r ' s c h o i c e was a c c i d e n t a l o r a c o n s c i o u s d e c i s i o n , i t does g i v e t h e r e a d e r a c l u e t o Mrs. Tennant's p e r s o n a l i t y . She i s a t o t a l l y s e l f - a b s o r b e d woman, g i v e n t o l i q u o r and s h i n y t h i n g s (p. 373), and she c a r e s about her son C h r i s t o p h e r o n l y i n so f a r as she can'use him as a weapon a g a i n s t h i s f a t h e r , o r make him f e e l . u n c o m f o r t a b l e f o r p r e f e r r i n g t h e company o f h i s f a t h e r and the "hew" Mrs. Tennant ( a l t h o u g h t h e y have been m a r r i e d f o r s i x y e a r s ) t o h e r s . The f i r s t she does c o n s c i o u s l y and w i t h a vengeance; the second. . would p r o b a b l y be l o u d l y d e n i e d , f o r as she s t r i d e n t l y i n s i s t s : I would n o t h o l d you. Take w i t h you my w i s h e s f o r your j o y , among your l o v e d ones. And when you can, when t h e y w i l l r e l e a s e you f o r a ' l i t t l e while--come t o me a g a i n . I w a i t f o r you. I l i g h t a lamp f o r you. My son, my o n l y c h i l d , t h e r e a r e , b u t d e s e r t sands f o r me between your comings. I l i v e on your v i s i t s - - C h r i s , I l i v e on your v i s i t s (p. 383). " I L i v e on Your V i s i t s " i s a t r i o o f c h a r a c t e r s k e t c h e s more than a s h o r t s t o r y . Mrs. Tennant i s the main c h a r a c t e r ; however, she i s ne v e r p h y s i c a l l y d e s c r i b e d . I n s t e a d , we 76 l e a r n about her t h r o u g h h e r s u r r o u n d i n g s and from her words. Her son i s t a l l and g o o d - l o o k i n g , caught h e r e between h i s mother and her " t r u e f r i e n d " Mme. Marah as he i s caught between her and h i s f a t h e r . Mme. Marah i s an anomaly. I t i s d i f f i c u l t t o see what she would f i n d i n t e r e s t i n g about, Mrs. T e n n a n t - - w i t h th e e x c e p t i o n , perhaps, of h e r b a r . She i s p r e o c c u p i e d w i t h p a l m i s t r y and t h e z o d i a c , and i s an amenable e c c e n t r i c somewhat i n t h e t r a d i t i o n o f " G l o r y i n t h e Daytime"'s H a l l y Noyes. When she i s i n t r o d u c e d t o C h r i s t o p h e r , her f i r s t words a r e , " C h r i s t , he's a b i g b a s t a r d , i s n ' t he?" She was a f i n e one t o t a l k about anyone's b e i n g b i g . Had she r i s e n she would have s t o o d s h o u l d e r a g a i n s t s h o u l d e r w i t h him, and she must have outweighed him by s i x t y pounds. She was d r e s s e d i n q u a n t i t i e s o f t w e e d l i k e s t u f f ornamented, s u r p r i s i n g l y , w i t h b l a c k s e q u i n s s e t on i n p a t t e r n s o f l i t t l e bunches of g rapes. Oh her m a s s i v e w r i s t s were bands and c h a i n s of d u l l s i l v e r , from some of w h i c h hung amulets of d i s c o l o r e d i v o r y , l i k e r o t t e d f a n g s . Over her head and neck was a s o r t . o f c a u l o f c r i s s c r o s s e d mauve v e i l i n g , s p l a t t e r e d w i t h f u z z y b l a c k b a l l s . The c a u l caused her no i n c o n v e n i e n c e . P u f f s o f 'smoke i s s u e d s p o r a d i c a l l y from b e h i n d i t , and, though the v e i l i n g was c r i s p e l s e w h e r e , around the mouth i t was o f a marshy t e x t u r e , where d r i n k had p a s s e d t h r o u g h i t (p. 375). The p l o t i s s i m p l i f i e d a lmost t o t h e p o i n t o f non-e x i s t e n c e . C h r i s t o p h e r s t o p s i n t o see h i s mother on the way t o v i s i t h i s f a t h e r and step-mother. He cannot s t a y l o n g because h i s t r a i n was l a t e , and t h e y a r e e a t i n g e a r l y i n o r d e r t o g e t a good s t a r t f o r the c o u n t r y the n e x t morning. Mrs. Tennant i s d i s a p p o i n t e d , and, n o t h e s i t a t i n g t o show i t , c a r p s a t him d u r i n g h i s e n t i r e v i s i t . She i s 77 '. ' like that" again: For the past week, up at h i s school, he had hoped--arid coming down i n the t r a i n he had hoped so hard that i t became prayer--that h i s mother would not be what he thought of only as " l i k e t h a t . " His prayer had gone unanswered. He knew by the two voices , by the head f i r s t t i l t e d , then held high, by the eyel ids lowered i n d i sda in then ra i sed i n outrage, by the l i t t l e l i sped words and then the elegant enunciation and the l o f t y d i c t i o n . He knew . . . (p. 374). Yes, oh, yes. The voices , the stances, the eyel ids--those were the signs. But when h i s mother divided the race into people and human beings--that was the cer ta in ty (p. 375). Here, for the f i r s t time, dr ink becomes something else to which one might f a l l v i c t i m . Mrs. Tennant's i n a b i l i t y to face herse l f , to accept .either her r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for her share of the collapse of her marriage, : - :o i her responsi-b i l i t y for herse l f afterwards, i s aggravated by the pseudo-solacing effects of l i q u o r . The game she plays i s a perverse one: dr inking to make herse l f more at ease wi th Christopher, she does not r e a l i s e that i t only a l ienates him fur ther . " I L ive on Your V i s i t s , " published i n The New Yorker on January 5, 1955, c lo se ly resembles aspects of $rhe Ladies of the Corr idor , the unsuccessful Parker-d'Usseau play of 1953 from which i t s mater ia l was drawn. The play i n ' t u r n c lo se ly resembled Dorothy Parker ' s own l i f e at the time i t was being w r i t t e n . Separated again from Alan Campbell, whom she had remarried i n 1950, she l i v e d at the Volney Hotel i n New York, and she was s ixty-two: For the past two years, she had seemed intent on burning her bridges and s i t t i n g alone i n the smoke. Friends would telephone to i n v i t e her out for a dr ink, or to supper, or to the theatre, and 78« she would say, "Oh, i f you'd o n l y c a l l e d f i v e m i n u t e s ago'. r . :. I'm so s o r r y , but i f you had o n l y c a l l e d f i v e m i n u t e s e a r l i e r . " Then she would s i t a l o n e i n her bare h o t e l room a t the V o l n e y and d r i n k and t a l k f o r hours t o M i s t y [her p o o d l e ] . When f r i e n d s came t o c a l l , t h e y were o f t e n g l a d to l e a v e . She was n o t always sober, and when she was n o t , she was r e p e t i t i v e and b o r i n g ; when she was sober, she o f t e n gave her f r i e n d s the i m p r e s s i o n she was n o t o v e r -j o y e d t o see them. A f t e r a t i m e , fewer f r i e n d s c a l l e d , and t h e y c a l l e d l e s s o f t e n . I t was as L i l l i a n H e i lman w r o t e i n her a u t o b i o g r a p h y : " D o t t i e ' s m i d d l e age, o l d age, made r o c k of much t h a t had been f l u i d , and e c c e n t r i c i t i e s once , charming became to o s t r a n g e f o r s a f e t y o r comfort."!' 4 She was o b v i o u s l y - n o t happy, but n e i t h e r d i d she seem v e r y s u r p r i s e d a t her s i t u a t i o n . I n 1922 R o b e r t B e n c h l e y , p r o b a b l y t h e b e s t f r i e n d she was e v e r t o have, had warned her t h a t " E v e n t u a l l y p e o p l e become the t h i n g t h e y d e s p i s e t h e most.""'""' P a r k e r c a t e g o r i c a l l y r e f u s e d t o a c c e p t t h i s ; y e t by 1929, when she w r o t e " B i g B l o n d e , " the a u t h o r had 16 come t o share " t w e n t y - e i g h t s p e c i f i c a t t r i b u t e s " w i t h t h e woman she had so p a i n s t a k i n g l y p o r t r a y e d . " B i g B l o n d e " was awarded th e 0. Henry P r i z e f o r t h e b e s t s h o r t . s t o r y p u b l i s h e d i n 1929, and P a r k e r d e s e r v e d i t . She d e s c r i b e s H a z e l Morse w i t h i n s i g h t and compassion, but never l o s e s h e r a r t i s t i c detachment. As K e a t s s a y s , " I n w r i t i n g about H a z e l Morse, Do r o t h y P a r k e r had w r i t t e n about h e r s e l f , but of c o u r s e t h e H a z e l Morse i n t h e s t o r y was not Dorothy P a r k e r . " " ^ I n s t e a d she i s a b i g , f u l l - b r e a s t e d b l o n d e who had been w o r k i n g as a model f o r a w h o l e s a l e d r e s s company when she met her husband H e r b i e ; t h e y were m a r r i e d s i x weeks l a t e r . 79 Her j o b was n o t onerous, and she met numbers o f men and spent numbers of evenings w i t h them, l a u g h i n g a t t h e i r j o k e s and t e l l i n g them she l o v e d t h e i r n e c k t i e s . Men l i k e d h e r , and she took i t f o r g r a n t e d t h a t the l i k i n g o f men was a d e s i r a b l e t h i n g . P o p u l a r i t y seemed t o h e r t o be w o r t h a l l t h e work t h a t had t o be p u t i n t o i t s achievement. Men l i k e d you because you were f u n , and when t h e y l i k e d you t h e y t o o k you out , and t h e r e you were. So, and s u c c e s s f u l l y , she was f u n . She was a good s p o r t . Men l i k e d a good s p o r t (p. 187). S h o r t l y a f t e r h e r m a r r i a g e , however, H a z e l Morse stopped b e i n g a good s p o r t . She began t o c r y e a s i l y and o f t e n , and t o want t o s t a y home a t n i g h t . When H e r b i e d i s c o v e r e d t h a t her weeping was n o t o r i e n t e d toward any p e r s o n a l t r a g e d i e s , but toward newspaper s t o r i e s o f " s t r a y e d c a t s " and " h e r o i c dogs" (p. 189), he q u i c k l y became d i s g u s t e d w i t h h e r , and took, t o coming home l a t e r and l a t e r , and t h e n n o t a t a l l . She would t r y t o change back, t o be a good s p o r t a g a i n , but she c o u l d n o t . They f o u g h t . A f t e r t h r e e y e a r s o f m a r r i a g e she s t a r t e d d r i n k i n g , i n an attempt t o g e t n e a r e r t o H e r b i e , i n an attempt t o d u l l t he c u t t i n g edges o f her e x i s t e n c e . She became f r i e n d s w i t h Mrs. M a r t i n , a n o t h e r b i g b l o n d e who had moved i n a c r o s s the h a l l , and e v e r y day "They drank t o g e t h e r t o b r a c e themselves a f t e r t h e d r i n k s o f t h e , n i g h t b e f o r e " (p. 193). Mrs. M a r t i n had an " a d m i r e r " who v i s i t e d h e r n e a r l y e v e r y n i g h t . . He o f t e n brought f r i e n d s w i t h him, and Mrs. Morse.was o f t e n inVatedjdtd©\o. Sppn'iistee'iebe"'^^ c l o s e tocaeman named Ed, and when H e r b i e l e f t h e r , she became h i s m i s t r e s s . "She was ne v e r n o t i c e a b l y drunk and 80 seldom sober" by t h e n , and she needed ..more l i q u o r t h a n b e f o r e " t o keep her m i s t y - m i n d e d . Too l i t t l e , and she was a c h i n g l y m e l a n c h o l y " (p. 197). Ed o f t e n took h e r t o a speakeasy named Jimmy's; t h e r e she met o t h e r women l i k e h e r s e l f , as w e l l as more men. However, Ed a l s o i n s i s t e d she be a good s p o r t , once w a l k i n g out on her d e p r e s s i o n . A f t e r t h r e e y e a r s Ed moved, and C h a r l e y began t o t a k e c a r e o f Mrs. Morse: There was n e a r l y a year o f C h a r l e y ; t h e n she d i v i d e d her time between him and Sydney, a n o t h e r f r e q u e n t e r of Jimmy's; th e n C h a r l e y s l i p p e d away a l t o g e t h e r . . . Then Sydney m a r r i e d a r i c h and w a t c h f u l b r i d e , and t h e n t h e r e was B i l l y . I n her haze, she never r e c a l l e d how men e n t e r e d her l i f e and l e f t i t . There were no s u r p r i s e s . She had no t h r i l l a t t h e i r advent, nor woe a t t h e i r d e p a r t u r e . She seemed always t o be a b l e t o a t t r a c t men. There was never a n o t h e r as r i c h as Ed, but t h e y were a l l generous t o h e r , i n t h e i r means (p. 200). I t had been seven y e a r s s i n c e she had seen H e r b i e . H a z e l Morse began t o t h i n k about s u i c i d e : She s l e p t , a i d e d by w h i s k e y , t i l l deep i n t h e a f t e r n o o n , t h e n l a y abed, a b o t t l e and a g l a s s a t h e r hand, u n t i l i t was time t o d r e s s and go out f o r d i n n e r . She was b e g i n n i n g t o f e e l toward a l c o h o l a l i t t l e p u z z l e d d i s t r u s t , as toward an o l d f r i e n d who had r e f u s e d a s i m p l e f a v o r . whiskey c o u l d s t i l l s oothe her f o r most of the t i m e , but t h e r e were sudden, i n e x p l i c a b l e moments when the c l o u d f e l l t r e a c h e r o u s l y away from h e r , and she was sawed by t h e s o r r o w and b e w i l d e r m e n t and n u i s a n c e o f a l l l i v i n g . She p l a y e d v o l u p t u o u s l y w i t h the thought o f c o o l , s l e e p y r e t r e a t . She had never been t r o u b l e d ' b y r e l i g i o u s b e l i e f and no v i s i o n o f an a f t e r - l i f e i n t i m i d a t e d h e r. She dreamed day a f t e r day o f n e v e r a g a i n p u t t i n g on t i g h t shoes, o f never h a v i n g t o l a u g h and l i s t e n and admire, o f never more b e i n g a good s p o r t . Never (p. 201). She d e c i d e d t o t a k e a overdose o f s l e e p i n g p i l l s , bought 81 twenty i n New Jersey, where they were le g a l , and put them away. Then one night on her way to Jimmy's she saw a man beating a horse, and for the rest of the evening she was unable to shake her depression. Her current boyfriend Art, becoming annoyed, advised her to t r y and. change by Thursday, and she agreed. When she got home, she took, the p i l l s . Her maid found her the next day, c a l l e d the doctor, then nursed her for the two days i t took to p u l l her out of the stupor. Mrs. Morse cr i e d b i t t e r l y when she r e a l i s e d she was s t i l l a l i v e ; the f i r s t l thing she saw was a card from Art showing the Detroit A t h l e t i c Glub, and reconfirming th e i r Thursday meeting. ' J ' She dropped the card to the f l o o r . Misery crushed her as i f she were between great smooth stones!. There passedJ he for e^ . her a as-Mow, ^  sl'dw pageant of days spent l y i n g i n her f l a t , of evenings at Jimmy's being a good sport, making herself laugh and coo at Art and other Arts; she saw a long parade of weary horses and shivering beggars and a l l beaten, driven, stumbling-things. Her feet throbbed as i f she had crammed them into the stubby champagne-colored slippers. Her heart seemed to swell and harden (p. 209). She asked the maid for a drink: Mrs. Morse looked into the liquor and shuddered back from i t s odor. Maybe i t would help. Maybe, when you had been knocked cold for a few days, your very f i r s t drink would give you a l i f t . Maybe whiskey would be her frie n d again. She prayed with-out addressing a God, without, knowing a God. Oh, please, please, l e t her be able to get drunk, please help keep her always, drunk. She l i f t e d the glass. "Thanks, Nettie," she said. "Here's mud i n your eye." The maid giggled. "That's the way, Mis:' Morse," she said. "You cheer up, now." "Yeah," said Mrs. Morse. "Sure" (p. 210). 82 H a z e l Morse i s n o t Dorothy P a r k e r , nor i s Dorothy P a r k e r H a z e l Morse, but t o g e t h e r t h e y form the two extremes of e v e r y woman who has ever thrown h e r s e l f a t , away from or away f o r a man or men. . When, p e r s o n a l ' i n t e g r i t y •••.is., s e t a g a i n s t s o c i a l moeurs i t g e n e r a l l y l o s e s : women a c t i n ways t h e y know t h e y s h o u l d n o t , and say t h i n g s t h e y know the y must n o t , on t h e o f f - c h a n c e t h a t t h i s t i m e , p e r h a p s , t h i n g s w i l l be d i f f e r e n t . But th e y never a r e . The men a r e not t o blame. They a r e , a f t e r a l l , o n l y a c c e s s o r i e s a f t e r t h e f a c t s of l i f e . P a r k e r was p e r c e p t i v e and d i s c r i m i n a t i n g enough t o r e a l i s e t h i s , w r i t i n g about i t as she h a l f - h e a r t e d l y s t r u g g l e d t o overcome what she c o u l d n o t change, b o t h w i t h i n and w i t h o u t h e r s e l f , but H a z e l Morse c o u l d never comprehend what she was up a g a i n s t , and we see her s l o w l y s i n k i n g i n t h e q u i c k s a n d of h e r s o c i o -e c o n o m i c a l l y - c o n d i t i o n e d background and v a l u e s . P o p u l a r i t y and companionship were what her b e i n g was o r i e n t e d toward; by the time she d i s c o v e r e d t h e i r r e l a t i v e w o r t h l e s s n e s s , she was i n c a p a b l e of f i n d i n g any k i n d o f r e a l , l a s t i n g l o v e w i t h w h i c h t o r e p l a c e them. A l l t h e v i c t i m s d i s c u s s e d i n t h e l a t t e r h a l f o f t h e c h a p t e r s u f f e r from t h e same f a t e . T h e i r v a l u e s were m i s p l a c e d somewhere a l o n g t h e l i n e o f t h e i r l i v e s , and the s u b s t i t u t e s w i t h w h i c h t h e y have managed t o r e p l a c e t h e s e v a l u e s have prove n t o be poor s u b s t i t u t e s i n d e e d . Once a g a i n , P a r k e r does n o t suggest any s p e c i f i c ways o f d e a l i n g w i t h t h e dilemma. She f i n d s meanings i n e x p e r i e n c e , t h e n 83 •weaves these experiences into stories from which the reader 18 must create his own meaning, applying i t to his l i f e as best he can, and only i f he w i l l . No artist can do more. 84 Notes: Chapter I I "'"Shanahan, p, 26, 2 T h i s s t o r y q u i t e p o s s i b l y has an a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l b a s i s . I n 1922-23 P a r k e r was h e a v i l y i n v o l v e d w i t h . C h a r l e s M a c A r t h u r , who l a t e r m a r r i e d H e l e n Hayes. When she found she was .pregnant^.'/'she had an. a b o r t i o n . S h o r t l y a f t e r t h a t , she made he r f i r s t s u i c i d e attempt. 3 K e a t s , pp. 81-82. 4 I b i d . , p. 81. ^Dorothy P a r k e r , "Such a P r e t t y L i t t l e P i c t u r e , " i n The Smart Set A n t h o l o g y , B u r t o n Rascoe and G r o f f C o n k l i n , eds. (New York! Reyna]/ and H i t c h c o c k , I n c . , 1934), p. 159, 6 I b i d . , v. 160. ^ I b i d . , p. 158. T h i s l a s t p o i n t may a l s o have an a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l b a s i s . P a r k e r used t o make up s t o r i e s about her husband Edward's i n e p t i t u d e i n o r d e r t o make him more i n t e r e s t i n g t o her Round T a b l e companions, h a v i n g him " f a l l i d o w n a manhole w h i l e r e a d i n g the W a l l S t r e e t  J o u r n a l on h i s way t o t h e o f f i c e " or " [ b r e a k i n g ] h i s arm w h i l e s h a r p e n i n g a p e n c i l (see K e a t s , pp.52-54). When she u n s u c c e s s f u l l y t r i e d t o c u t . h e r w r i s t s , she blamed her f a i l u r e t o do t h e j o b p r o p e r l y on t h e f a c t t h a t " E d d i e hadn't even been a b l e t o sharpen h i s own r a z o r s " ( i b i d . , p. 8 2 ) . 8 " P i c t u r e , " p. 160. 9 I b i d . , p. 166. 1 0 D o r o t h y P a r k e r , "The Banquet of Crow," The New Y o r k e r , 33-^December 145/1957), 40. 1 : L I b i d . , p. 41. 1 2 I . b i d . , p. 4 2 f . 13 She had, of c o u r s e , p u b l i s h e d b e f o r e , but her " A n t h o l o g i e s ' and t h e o t h e r p r o s e . p i e c e s w h i c h appeared i n The S a t u r d a y E v e n i n g P o s t and t h e L a d i e s ' Home J o u r n a l were l i t t l e more t h a n c h a r a c t e r s k e t c h e s . Even the l o n g e r " E d u c a t i o n o G l o r i a " d e s c r i b e s a type r a t h e r t h a n t e l l s a s t o r y . 1 4 K e a t s , p. 267. "^Robert B e n c h l e y , as quoted i n i b i d . , p. 87. 1 6 I b i d . , p. 146. K e a t s never does l i s t t he twenty e i g h t a t t r i b u t e s . 1 7 I b i d . 1 8 S e e i b i d . , p. 145. 86 C o n c l u s i o n I n the S a t u r d a y Review o f November 4, 1933, Ogden Nash commented: "To say t h a t Mrs. P a r k e r w r i t e s w e l l i s as f a t u o u s , I'm a f r a i d , as p r o c l a i m i n g t h a t C e l l i n i was c l e v e r .with h i s hands. . . . The t r i c k about her w r i t i n g i s t h e t r i c k about R i n g L a r d n e r ' s w r i t i n g o r E r n e s t Hemingway's w r i t i n g . I t i s n ' t a t r i c k . " ' ' " R a t h e r , i t i s an a r t , and i t i s h i g h t i m e t h a t D o r o t h y P a r k e r be r e c o g n i s e d as an a r t i s t . Her o u t p u t was r e l a t i v e l y s m a l l - - t h r e e volumes o f p r o s e , f o u r o f p o e t r y (not i n c l u d i n g c o l l e c t i o n s ) , t h r e e c o - a u t h o r e d p l a y s and the c o l l e c t e d C o n s t a n t Reader columns--but as A l e x a n d e r W o o l l c o t t n o t e d , "most o f i t has been pure g o l d . . . [of] so p o t e n t a d i s t i l l a t i o n o f n e c t a r and wormwood, o f ambrosia and d e a d l y n i g h t s h a d e , as might suggest t o t h e r e s t o f us t h a t we a l l w r i t e f a r too 2 much." She never wrote a n o v e l , a l t h o u g h she made s e v e r a l f a i n t - h e a r t e d s t a b s a t one; i n d e e d , she seems a l m o s t s u r p r i s e d t h a t she ever got a n y t h i n g down: " I , a f t e r t h e c r e a t i v e l a b o r s i n v o l v e d i n composing a t e l e g r a m t o the e f f e c t t h a t I won't be a b l e t o come t o d i n n e r Thursday on 87 a c c o u n t o f a s e v e r e c o l d , have t o go and l i e down f o r t h e r e s t o f t h e day" (p. 523, i n "And A g a i n , Mr. S i n c l a i r L e w i s ' y , ) . Each s t o r y r e q u i r e d an average o f s i x months t o complete, and she s u f f e r e d a c u t e l y from w r i t e r ' s b l o c k d u r i n g most o f her l i t e r a r y l i f e . I t was her r e p u t a t i o n as a w i t w h i c h k e p t p e o p l e from t a k i n g h e r s e r i o u s l y as a w r i t e r : t h a t , and t h e f a c t t h a t h e r s h o r t s t o r i e s f a c e d enormous c o m p e t i t i o n from t h o s e o f men l i k e Hemingway, L a r d n e r , F i t z g e r a l d and O'Hara. P a r k e r ' s b e s t t s h o c t i s t o r . - i e s l e a . ' s i i k y t r i v . a l Hemingway's, b u t perhaps t h e r e were'not enough o f them. She admired Hemingway immensely--almost w o r s h i p p e d him, as her r e v i e w s of h i s work showy-and she was i n l o v e w i t h him a t one p o i n t . The week b e f o r e she d i e d , she asked B e a t r i c e Ames, " D i d E r n e s t r e a l l y l i k e me?" B e a t r i c e , who had h e r own memories o f Hemingway, and who had never f o r g i v e n o r f o r g o t t e n t h e poem he had w r i t t e n about Dorothy,3 and t h e way he had' t u r n e d on her husband Donald Ogden S t e w a r t , found t h e q u e s t i o n m o m e n t a r i l y d i f f i c u l t t o answer. But she a l s o knew t h a t D orothy P a r k e r w i s h e d t o be remembered f o r h e r s h o r t s t o r i e s , and had always l o o k e d t o Hemingway as t h e master i n t h a t f i e l d . I t was i m p o r t a n t t o h e r t o have Hemingway's good o p i n i o n . Yes, B e a t r i c e t o l d h er f r i e n d , Hemingway r e a l l y had always l i k e d h er v e r y much. He t r u l y had. She s a i d D o r o t h y thought about t h i s , and nodded, and seemed c o n t e n t . 4 Thus B a r k e r h e r s e l f b r i n g s us back t o the theme of her p a r a n o i c i n s e c u r i t y , t h a t r e l e n t l e s s p u r s u e r from whom she c o u l d f i n d r e f u g e o n l y i n her work. Her escape was a t b e s t 88 a p a r t i a l one, as most o f h e r p o e t r y and some o f t h e s t o r i e s s u g g e s t , but i t was a l l she had, and she c l u n g t o i t d e s p e r -a t e l y . T h i s almost p e r c e p t i b l e sense of p a n i c l e a d s t o the u n c o m f o r t a b l e , . e m b a r a s s i n g f e e l i n g t h e r e a d e r sometimes has of t h e a u t h o r s t a n d i n g g h o s t l i k e over h i s s h o u l d e r w h i s p e r i n g "Understand me! L i k e me!"--which i s a l s o F i t z g e r a l d ' s major f l a w . Both P a r k e r and F i t z g e r a l d were v i c t i m s o f chance, a l c o h o l and t r a g i c l o v e s , but b o t h were p r i m a r i l y v i c t i m s of t h e m s e l v e s . P a r k e r r e a l i z e d t h i s e a r l y ; F i t z g e r a l d n e v e r d i d . Her r e c o g n i t i o n t o r e her work a p a r t , whereas h i s r e f u s a l t o c o n f r o n t t h a t : ? p o s s i b i l i t y gave S c o t t ' s n o v e l s t h e i r a lmost p a t h e t i c u n i t y . They knew each o t h e r , they r e s p e c t e d each o t h e r ' s work and t h e y were, i n f a c t , b r i e f l y l o v e r s , but n o t h i n g came o f i t . I n t h e P a r i s Review i n t e r v i e w P a r k e r later.-remembered, "Fhen he d i e d no one went t o the f u n e r a l , n o t a s i n g l e s o u l came, o r even sent a f l o w e r . I s a i d , 'Ebor son o f a b i t c h , ' a quote r i g h t out o f The G r e a t Gatsby, and everyone thought i t was another w i s e c r a c k . But i t was s a i d i n dead s e r i o u s n e s s . " " * She c o n c l u d e d t h e i n t e r v i e w by s a y i n g , " I t ' s n o t t h e t r a g e d i e s t h a t k i l l u s, i t ' s the messes. I c a n ' t s t a n d messes. I'm n o t b e i n g a s m a r t c r a c k e r . You know I'm n o t when you meet me--don't you, honey?" A g a i n we g l i m p s e poor l i t t l e D o t t i e R o t h s c h i l d p e e r i n g out from b e h i n d t h e s i x t y - f i v e - y e a r - o l d Mrs. Dorothy P a r k e r , and our h e a r t s go out t o h e r . But t h e y need n o t , r e a l l y . P a r k e r d i d n o t 8 9 need our sympathy, would n o t have a c c e p t e d i t , would have thrown i t back i n our f a c e s w i t h an i n c i s i v e i m p r e c a t i o n , knowing i n t h e back o f some dark r e c e s s o f her mind t h a t she c o u l d see what we c o u l d n o t , and comment e f f e c t i v e l y upon i t . An a u t h o r s h o u l d , a f t e r a l l , be u l t i m a t e l y j u d g e d a c c o r d i n g t o h i s w r i t i n g , no m a t t e r what i t c o s t him t o get i t w r i t t e n , and Mrs. P a r k e r d e s e r v e s a t l e a s t a n o t h e r s e r i o u s l o o k . Perhaps our t i m e i s d i s t a n c e d enough from h e r s f o r us t o be a b l e t o examine her work r e l a t i v e l y o b j e c t i v e l y ; perhaps i t i s n o t . I n t h i s age o f c o n t a c t l e n s e s , "News Item" has become an a d v e r t i s e m e n t , r a t h e r than r e c o g n i s e d as a c r y o f contempt f o r man and a comment on woman's c o n d i t i o n s . B u t ' t h i s w i l l change. Do r o t h y P a r k e r i s n o t a major American w r i t e r , b u t she i s a good one. She e x e r t e d no s m a l l amount o f i n f l u e n c e as a c r i t i c ,and shaper o f New York.moeurs d u r i n g t h e T w e n t i e s , and a l t h o u g h New York m i g h t . n o t i n f a c t be t h e c e n t r e of the w o r l d , f o r many p e o p l e i t was. I n "A Toast and a Tear f o r D o rothy P a r k e r , " Edmund W i l s o n reminds us t h a t "She i s no t E m i l y Bronte* o r Jane A u s t e n , but she has been a t some p a i n s t o w r i t e w e l l , and she has p u t i n t o what she^has w r i t t e n a v o i c e , a s t a t e of mind, an e r a , a few moments o f human e x p e r i e n c e t h a t nobody e l s e has conveyed."^ What more c o u l d we want? P r e s e n t s ? 90 Notes: C o n c l u s i o n Ogden Nash, S a t u r d a y Review, November 4, .1933, p. 231, as quoted i n A LfBrary of" L i t e r a r y C r i t i c i s m : Modern American L i t e r a t u r e , V o l . I l l ' , " D. Cur l e y and M. Kramer, eds. (New York: F r e d e r i c k Ungar P u b l i s h i n g Co., 1969), p. 2. 2 A l e x a n d e r W o o l l c o t t , "Our Mrs. P a r k e r , " as quoted i n D e s e r t I s l a n d Decameron, s e l e c t e d by P. A l l e n S m i t h (Garden C i t y : Doubleday, Doran & Co., I n c . , 1945), ,. , p. 375f. The c o l l e c t i o n a l s o i n c l u d e s "You Were P e r f e c t l y F i n e . " 3 See K e a t s , c h a p t e r 5, e s p e c i a l l y pages 112-113. 4 I b i d . , p. 296. ^ P a r i s Review I n t e r v i e w s , p. 82. Edmund W i l s o n , "A Toas t and a Tear f o r D o r o t h y P a r k e r , "vThevNew'iiY^rker_, ?20 V(May220,11944) , 668.. 91 A Checklist of Dorothy Parker's Prose, Exclusive of Reviews Inconsistencies i n page notation are due to the various methods used by the d i f f e r e n t indices consulted, and to the nature of the journals i n which much of Parker's work appeared'.-svI have tracked the stories as f a r back as possible, but have not been able to f i n d complete data on the o r i g i n a l publication of some becauseeof the u n a v a i l a b i l i t y of early issues of many of these magazines on the Lower Mainland. Some checking was done i n New York, and Mr. Edwin Kennebeck of Viking Press was contacted for background on "Glory i n the Daytime," "The Bolt behind the Blue," "The Custard Heart," "Good Souls" and "Too Bad;I"Vbutf*hev?w3s-iunalOjetag.provide-any information. A key to abbreviations follows: - ' . A S P... r -i-Af t er „ Sue h P1 e a sur e s "CTHTlSt. - ColTteted Stories "HL" -'Hire "Lies"" -LFTL - Laments for the Living NVP - The Viking Portable Dorothy Parker  NYr - The New YorEer  SEP - The Saturday Evening Post "Advice to the L i t t l e Peyton G i r l . " Harper's Bazaar, February 1934, p. 46. "The Apartment House Anthology." SEP, 194 (August 20, 1921), 10-11+. "Are We Women or Are We Mice?" Mademoiselle, May 1943; condensed i n The Reader's Digest, 43 (July 1943), 71-2. "Arrangement i n Black and White." NYr, 3 (October 8, 1927), 22-24; Col St; HL; LFTL; NVP. "The A r t i s t ' s Reward." NYr, 5 (November 30, 1929), 28-31; NVP. "As the S p i r i t Moves." SEP, 192 (May 22, 1920), 8-9+/ "The Banquet of Crow." NYr, 33 (December 14, 1957), 39-43. "Big Blonde." Bookman, 68 (February 1929), 639-45; Col St; HL; LFTL; NVP. "Bobbed Hair: A Novel by Twenty Authors." C o l l i e r ' s, 75 (January 27, 1925), 30-1+. "The Bolt behind the Blue." NVP. "But the One on My Right." NYr, 5 (October 19, 1929), 25-7; 92 condensed i n The Reader's Digest, 30 (June 1937), 72-4. "A Certain Lady." NYr, 1 (February 28, 1925), 15-16. "Clothe the Naked." Scribner's Magazine, 103 (January 1938), 31-35; Col St; HL; NVP; condensed i n Scholastic, 32 (March-137 1978)73-5. "Cousin Larry." NYr, 10 (June 30, 1934), 15-17; NVP. "Cradle of C i v i l i z a t i o n . " NYr, 5 (September 21, 1929), 23-4. "The Custard Heart." Col St; HL; NVP. "Dialogue at Three i n the Morning." NYr, 1 (February 13, 1926), 13; LFTL. "A Dinner Party Anthology." Ladies' Home Journal, 37 (August 1926), 4+. ^ "Dusk before Fireworks." Harper's Bazaar, September 1932, p. 36; ASP; Col St; HL; NVP. ~~ ~ ~ "The Education of G l o r i a . " Ladies' Home Journal, 33 (October 1920), 37+. ~ ^™ "Ernest Hemingway." NYr, 3 i(February 18, 1928), 76-7+; 5 (November 30, T9~l9) , 28-31. "From the Diary of a New York Lady." NYr, 9 (March 25, 1933), 13-14; ASP; Col St; HL; NVP. "G.B.S., P r a c t i c a l l y i n Person." NYr, 4 (July 7, 1928), 28-30. "The Game." Cosmopolitain, December 1948, p. 58. "The Garter." NYr, 4 (September 8, 1928), 17-18. "Glory i n the Daytime." A^P;_Col St; HL; NVP. "Good Souls." NVP. "Here We Are." Cosmopolitain, March 1930, p. 32; ASP; Col St; HL; NVP. As a one-act play in" 24 Favorite  One-Act PTays, ed. Cerf and Cartmell, and" translated into the French "Nous y v o i l a , " by Nadine A l l e g r e t and C. Guiche i n Revue de Paris, May 1946, p. 51. "Horsie." Harper's Bazaar, December 1932, p. 66; ASP; Col St; HL; NVP. "I Live on Your V i s i t s . " NYr, 30 (January 15, 1955), 24-7; NVP. 93 " J u s t a L i t t l e One." NYr, 4 (May 12, 1928), 20-1; C o l S t ; HL; LFTL; NVP. "Lady w i t h a Lamp." Ha r p e r ' s Bazaar, A p r i l 1932, p. 56; ASP; C o l S t ; HL; NVP. ~~ "The L a s t Tea." NYr, 2 (September 11, 1926), 23-4; C o l S t ; HL; LFTL; NVP. " L i t t l e C u r t i s . " P i c t o r i a l Review, 28 ( F e b r u a r y 1927), 26-9, under the t i t l e "Lucky L i t t l e Curtis';'; C o l St_; HL; LFTL; NVP. "The L i t t l e Hours." NYr, 9 (August 19, 1933), 13-14, ASP; C o l S t ; HL; NVP. " L o l i t a . " NYr, 31 (August 27, 1955), 32-35+, NVP. "The L o v e l y Leave." Woman's Home Companion, 70 (December 1943), 22-3+; NVP. "The M a n t l e o f W h i s t l e r . " NYr, 4 (August 18, 1928), 15-16; Golden Book, 22 ( J u l y IU35), 92-3; LFTL. "Men I'm Not M a r r i e d To." SEP, 194 (June 17, 1922), 13+. "The M i d d l e o r Blu e P e r i o d . " C o s m o p o l i t a i n , December 1945; NVP.. VMr. Durant." American Mercury, 3 (September 1924), 81-7; 64 (June 1947), 694-703] C o l S t ; HL; LFTL; NVP. "Mrs. C a r r i n g t o n and Mrs. Crane." NYr, 9 ( J u l y 15, 1933), 11-12. "Mrs. H o f s t a d t e r o n J J o s e p h i n e S t r e e t . " NYr, 10 (August 4, 1934), 20-6; NVP. "New York a t 6:30 p.m." E s q u i r e , 62 (November 1964), 96-101; 80 (October 1973), ITI^T. "New York t o D e t r o i t . " V a n i t y F a i r , October 1928, p. 61, under the t i t l e "Long D i s t a n c e " ; C o l St; HL; LFTL-, NVP. "Oh, He's Charming." NYr, 2 (October 9, 1926), 22-3. "A One-Woman Show." Everybody's Magazine, 44 (March 1921), 34-5. "Our Own Crowd." SEP, 194 ( A p r i l 28, 1923), 14+. "Our Tuesday C l u b . " L a d i e s ' Home J o u r n a l , 37 ( J u l y 1920), 4+. "Out o f the S i l e n c e . " NYr, 4 (September 1, 1928), 28-32. "The Road Home." NYr, 9 (September 16, 1933), 19-20. 94 "Sentiment." Harper's Bazaar, May 1933, p. 64; ASP; C o l St; HL; NVP. "The Sexes." New Republic, 51 (July 13, 1927), 203-4; Col St; HL; LFTL; ~WT. "The Siege of Madr id . " L i t e r a r y Digest , 124 (December 11, 1937), 27; NVP (also known as ''Madrid Martyrdom"). "So ld iers of the Repub l i c . " NYr, 13 (February 5, 1938), 13-14+; "Col St; HL; NVP. "Song of the S h i r t , 1941." NYr, 17 (June 28, 1941), 13-16+; "NVP. "The Standard of L i v i i n g . " NYr, 17 (September 20, 1941), 24-26+; NVP. "Such a Pre t ty L i t t l e P i c t u r e . " The Smart Set, 1922; Smart Set Anthology. "A Summer Hotel Anthology." Ladies ' Home Journal , 37 (September 1920), 32+. ' "A Telephone C a l l . " Bookman, 66 (January 1928), 500-2; Col St; HL; LFTL; N V P ~ " T e r r i b l e Day Tomorrow." NYr, 3 (February 11, 1928), 14-16. "Too Bad . " " ASP; Col St; HL; NVP. "Travelogue." NYr, 2 (October 30, 1926), 20-1. "The W a l t z . " NYr, 9 (September 2, 1933), 11-12; ASP; Col St ; HL; NVP; condensed i n Scholas t ic , 26 (March 2 3 7 1313"), 4^5, and The .'Reader' s Digest , 55 (December 1949), 86-8. "Welcome Home." SEP, 195 (July 22, 1922), 9+. "Who i s thattMan?" Vogue, Ju ly 1944; condensed i n The  Reader's Digest , 45 (September 1944), 78-80. "Why Not She-Friends?" NYr, 1 (September 19, 1925), 35+. "The Wonderful Old Gentleman." P i c t o r i a l Review, 27 (January 1926), 24-5; Col St; HL; LFTL; NVP. "You Must Come See Us Sometime." SEP, 196 (September 1, 1923), 10-11. "You Were P e r f e c t l y F i n e . " NYr, 5 February 23, 1929), 17-18; Col St; HL; LFTL; NVP. 95 "A Young Woman i n Green L a c e . " NYr, 8 (September 24, 1932), 15-17; ASP. Forward t o the i l l u s t r a t e d l i m i t e d e d i t i o n o f L i l l i a n H eilman's Watch on the Rhine, p u b l i s h e d i n 1942 by t h e J o i n t A n t i - F a s c i s t Refugee.Committee. I n t r o d u c t i o n t o The Most o f S.J. Perelman (New York: Simon And S c h u s t e r T T HJ5S". I n t r o d u c t i o n t o The S e a l i n the Bedroom, and o t h e r P r e d i c a m e n t s , by James Thurber (LoncTon:, Hamish H a m i l t o n ) , 1951. P r e f a c e t o Men, Women and gogs, by James Thurber (London: Hamish H a m i l t o n ) , 1955. E d i t o r , The P o r t a b l e F. S c o t t F i t z g e r a l d (New York: The V i k i n g P r e s s ) , 1^6§. 96 A. Selected Bibl iography of Works Relat ing to ' Dorothy Parker and~to her Times . Adams, Samuel Hopkins. A. Wool lcott : His L i f e and His World. New York: Reynal & Hitchcock", 1945. A l l e n , F . L . Only Yesterday. New York: Perennial L i b r a r y , Harper & Bros . , 1931. . Since Yesterday. New York: Bantam Books, Harper & Bros . , 1939. Beach, Joseph VJarren. American F i c t i o n . New York: Macmillan, 1941. Benchley, Nathaniel . Robert Benchley. New York: McGraw-H i l l , 1953. Bentley, E r i c R u s s e l l . The Dramatic Event. New York: Horizon Press, 195W. Brown, John. Mason. "High S p i r i t s i n the Twenties." Horizon, 4 (July 1962), 33-41. Cerf, Bennett, and Van H. Cartmel l . 24 Favori te One-Act P lays . Garden C i t y : Doubleday and Company, I n c . , 1958. Cooper, Wyatt. "Whatever You Think Dorothy Parker was L i k e , She Wasn' t . " Esquire, 70 (July 1968), 56-7+. Curley, Dorothy, and Maurice Kramer. Modern American L i t e r a t u r e : A L ibra ry of L i t e r a r y C r i t i c i s m . New York: Frederick Ungar Publ i shing Co. , 1969. Drennan, R.E. The Algonquin Wits . New York: The C i t ade l Press, 1968~ Ephron, Nora. "Women." Esquire-, 80, No. 4, Whole 479 (October 1973), 58+. Farrar , John. "Anonymously." Bookman, 67 (March 1928), 70. Farnham, Marynia F. "The Pen and the D i s t a f f . " The Saturday  Review of L i t e r a t u r e , 30 (February 22, 1947)7^"-8~+7 ~ F i t z g e r a l d , F. Scott . The Great Gatsby. New York: Charles Scr ibner ' s Sons, 195~3~. . The Letters of F. Scott F i t z g e r a l d . Ed. Andrew Turnbu l l . New York": Charles Scr ibner ' s Sons, 1963. G ingr i ch , Arnold . "Entree to the World of Dorothy Parker . " 97 Esquire, 57 (January 1962), 4. Grant, Jane. Ross, The New Yorker, and Me. New York: Reynal & Co. , 19T8". Gray, James. On Second Thought. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1946. Harriman,"Margaret Case. The Vicious C i r c l e . New York: Rinehart, 1951. Harte, Barbara, and Carolyn Riley, eds. 200 Contemporary  Authors . Detroit: Gale Research Company"] 1969. Hellman, L i l l i a n . An Unfinished Woman. Boston: L i t t l e , Brown, 1969. The Collected Plays. Boston: L i t t l e , Brown and Company, 1972. Janeway, Elizabeth. Constant Reader and You Might as .Well Live review. Saturday Review, 53 (October 10,~T970), 3TJ^ T2. " Johnson, Robert Owen. An. Index to Lit e r a t u r e i n 'The New  Yorker.' Metuchen, New Jersey: Scarecrow Press, Inc., 1971. . Ah Index to P r o f i l e s i n 'The New Yorker.' M^tucKeh" New Jersey: Scarecrow Pres~,™ Inc. , 1972. Keats, John. You Might as Well Live: the L i f e and Times of Dorothy Parker. New York-: Simon and Schuster, T970. Labrie, Ross. "Dorothy Parker Revisited." A twenty-two-page manuscript slated to be published i n The Canadian Review of American Studies i n either the spring or the F a l l ofT97F^ Lauterbach, Richard E. "The Legend of Dorothy Parker."' Esquire, 22 (October 1944), 93+. Lawrence, Margaret. School of Femininity.. New York: Stokes, 1936. Loggins, Vincent. I Hear America. New York: Biblo and Tannen, 1937. Loos, Anita. But Gentlemen Marry Brunettes. New York: Boni & Liveright, VPZhT. ; Masson, Thomas Lansing. Our American Humorists. New York: Moffat, 1922. 98 Moody, R i c h a r d . L i l l i a n H eilman: P l a y w r i g h t . New York: Pegasus! The B o b b s - M e r r i l l Company, I n c . , P u b l i s h e r s , 1972. Oppenheimer, George. Here Today. New York: Samuel French'.,--.. 1931. . The P a s s i o n a t e P l a y g o e r . New York: The V i k i n g ^Press7"T95in P a r k e r , Dorothy. A f t e r Such P l e a s u r e s . New York: The V i k i n g P r e s s , 1933. , and Elmer L. R i c e . C l o s e Harmony, or The Lady Next Door. New York: Samuel F r e n c h , 1*T2~9. C o l l e c t e d P o e t r y . New York: Modern L i b r a r y , 1936. . The C o l l e c t e d S t o r i e s o f D o r o t h y P a r k e r . New York: Modern L i b r a r y , 1942. . C o n s t a n t Reader. New York: The V i k i n g P r e s s , 1970. Death and Taxes. New York: The V i k i n g P r e s s , 1931. Enough Rope. New York: B o n i & L i v e r i g h t , 1927. Here L i e s . New York: The V i k i n g P r e s s , 1939. , and Arnaud D'Usseau. L a d i e s o f t h e C o r r i d o r . New York: : ThelMk'itngsBr ei .s7''l r954. . Not So Deep as a W e l l . New York: The V i k i n g Press73936". . The P o r t a b l e D o r o t h y P a r k e r : R e v i s e d and E n l a r g e d E d i t i o n . New York: The V i k i n g P r e s s , 1974. Sunset Gun. New York: The V i k i n g P r e s s , 1928. Rascoe, B u r t o n , and G r o f f C o n k l i n , eds. The Smart Set  A n t h o l o g y . New York: R e y n a l and H i t c h c o c k , 1934. R u b i n , L o u i s D., J r . The Comic I m a g i n a t i o n i n American L i t e r a t u r e . New B r u n s w i c k : R u t g e r s U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , T 9 T 3 7 Shanahan, W i l l i a m . "Robert B e n c h l e y and Dorothy P a r k e r : Punch and Judy i n F o r m a l D r e s s . " Rendezvous, 3 ( S p r i n g 1968), 23-34. Shannon, D a v i d A. Between the Wars: Am e r i c a , 1919-1941. Bos t o n : Houghton M i f f l i n , 1965. 99 Smith, H.A. Desert Island Decameron. Philadelphia, The Blakiston Co., 1947 , Thurber, James. The Years with Ross. New York: Signet Books, New American Library, 1962. Van Doren, Mark. "Dorothy Parker." The English Journal, 23, No. 7 (September 1934), 535-4T7 Wilson, Edmund. "A Toast and a Tear for Dorothy Parker." The New Yorker, 20 (May 20, 1944), 67-8. Winn, Janet. "Capote, Mailer and Miss Parker." New  Republic, 140 (February 9, 1959), 27-8. Woollcott, Alexander. The Portable Woollcott. New York: The Viking Press, T9~%6~ " Writers at Work: The Paris Review Interviews. Malcolm CowTey~ ed". New York: Compass Books, T959 . Yates, Norris W. The American Humorist: Conscience of the  Twentieth Century. Ames: Iowa State University Press, 1964T Robert Benchley. New York: Twayne Publishers, Tnc . , 1968. 

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