I Stand Here Ironing Questions and Answers

I Stand Here Ironing

In the short story by Olsen, "I Stand Here Ironing," one of the themes is a mother's regret. As the mother stands at her ironing board pressing a dress, she recounts the childhood of her eldest...

Latest answer posted December 27, 2018, 2:39 pm (UTC)

2 educator answers

I Stand Here Ironing

Tillie Olsen's "I Stand Here Ironing" is told as an interior monologue held by the mother who has been contacted by school officials about her daugther. The monologue of the narrator/mother...

Latest answer posted August 5, 2010, 6:44 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

Conflict can be subdivided into two major categories: internal and external. "I Stand Here Ironing" contains both, but the main conflict is internal. The narrator is struggling with herself. She is...

Latest answer posted July 23, 2009, 11:09 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

The opening line of Tillie Olsen's short story, "I Stand Here Ironing," is a metaphor for the ambivalence of the mother about her skills as a parent and about the future of her oldest daughter when...

Latest answer posted September 16, 2010, 2:08 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

Based on the information that Tillie Olsen provides, a case can be made to consider the narrator of “I Stand Here Ironing” reliable or unreliable. Because the mother is a first-person narrator,...

Latest answer posted August 24, 2019, 4:47 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

One key principle in this monologue is the powerlessness the narrator feels over daughter. There is a pervasive feeling of disappointment in this relationship despite the narrator's best efforts...

Latest answer posted September 25, 2010, 11:20 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

In the last line of the story, the narrator hopes that her daughter, Emily, whom she fears has suffered as a result of her weak parenting skills, will know "that she is more than this dress on the...

Latest answer posted May 28, 2007, 3:34 am (UTC)

2 educator answers

I Stand Here Ironing

In Tillie Olsen’s story, the narrator’s main emotions regarding her daughter, Emily, are acceptance and guilt. She he knows that she did her best raising Emily in difficult circumstances, as the...

Latest answer posted May 29, 2019, 4:47 am (UTC)

2 educator answers

I Stand Here Ironing

The context of this quote in the story is that Emily's mother, who is home ironing, receives a call from someone--perhaps a school administrator: principal, guidance counselor or social...

Latest answer posted September 17, 2010, 5:25 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

I think it is towards the close of the story that we get the surprising, full import of the relationship between the mother, the daughter, and the iron in Tillie Olsen’s “I Stand Here Ironing”...

Latest answer posted September 20, 2019, 10:16 am (UTC)

3 educator answers

I Stand Here Ironing

To develop a good paper, you need to start with a thesis that you can support well. And to be able to support a thesis well, you need to begin with a position that speaks to you personally. Here...

Latest answer posted October 13, 2019, 12:02 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

As the narrator, the mother in the story “I Stand Here Ironing” by Tillie Olsen is ask by someone to discuss her daughter Emily and ways that she can be helped. The mother then reflects on the...

Latest answer posted December 6, 2012, 12:28 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

The conflict that is evidenced in this powerful monologue takes the form of both internal and external, as the mother battles with her own sense of internal guilt concerning the decisions that she...

Latest answer posted September 29, 2013, 5:50 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

The relationship of the speaker of this monologue with her daughter is one that is characterised by past hurts and regret. In particular, it is clear that the speaker feels real guilt about the...

Latest answer posted September 30, 2013, 5:54 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

Tone, which is an integral part of a narrative, is produced by the writer's diction as well as stylistic choices concerning syntax, line or sentence length, imagery, and other figurative language....

Latest answer posted January 7, 2011, 3:19 pm (UTC)

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I Stand Here Ironing

The central idea of "I Stand Here Ironing" is the fragility of the mother-daughter relationship within the context of single motherhood. The narrator highlights the central idea through a...

Latest answer posted August 28, 2018, 6:16 pm (UTC)

2 educator answers

I Stand Here Ironing

Perhaps, one reason for the intensity and importance of the guilt that the mother feels in the story can be seen in its closing. It becomes clear that the mother understands that she has missed a...

Latest answer posted October 12, 2013, 4:54 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

Rising action is defined as the events that develop from the conflict of a story--beginning with the action that incites the conflict--and lead to the climax. The climax is defined as that point in...

Latest answer posted March 17, 2010, 3:58 am (UTC)

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I Stand Here Ironing

In "I Stand Here Ironing" by Tillie Olsen, the mother of Emily, who loves her daughter, delights in remembering what a beautiful baby she was and how Emily loved motion, light, color, music, and...

Latest answer posted February 10, 2010, 12:25 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

In "I Stand Here Ironing," the narrator (Emily's mother) does not love her other children more, however, she is alone when Emily is a baby because Emily's father left them before Emily was a year...

Latest answer posted September 20, 2010, 12:35 pm (UTC)

2 educator answers

I Stand Here Ironing

The literal physical setting is indicated in the title: the entire story is told by the narrator, while she is standing there ironing clothes. Now, the story she tells ranges a bit more widely in...

Latest answer posted February 28, 2007, 12:23 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

I believe the Emily's relationship with her sister Susan is the only one discussed in the story because it is the one most significant to her. The narrator, Emily and Susan's mother, says that,...

Latest answer posted June 10, 2010, 1:49 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

And when is there time to remember, to sift, to weigh, to estimate, to total? I will start and there will be an interruption and I will have to gather it all together again. Or I will become...

Latest answer posted August 5, 2009, 11:56 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

Emily's mother failed, through no fault of her own, to provide Emily with the bonding, attention, and support babies and children need. They were separated for long periods of time, and Emily...

Latest answer posted February 14, 2010, 9:23 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

It is a well-known fact that many great comedians suffer from depression, and comedy is their way of discharging this emotion and fighting back at this darkness of the soul. It seems that this may...

Latest answer posted July 23, 2009, 8:00 am (UTC)

2 educator answers

I Stand Here Ironing

The iron represents the life of hard work and drudgery the single mother who narrates the story endures as she raises her children. The mother, as she irons, dwells on her oldest daughter—who she...

Latest answer posted May 5, 2019, 11:52 am (UTC)

2 educator answers

I Stand Here Ironing

In Tillie Olsen’s “I Stand Here Ironing,” the mother’s ironing can be seen as symbolic because, just as an iron pushes the wrinkles out of a piece of clothing, the mother has, through circumstances...

Latest answer posted March 23, 2018, 5:58 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

Tillie Olsen writes about a mother who has made many mistakes in raising one of her children. The story “I Stand Here Ironing” brings to the reader an unnamed narrator who has been burdened by...

Latest answer posted March 24, 2013, 1:54 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

You might want to focus particularly on the way in which Olsen uses imagery to express the thoughts of the typical mother who is run ragged and absolutely exhausted. In particular, a stylistic...

Latest answer posted December 13, 2011, 6:29 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

In many ways, "I Stand Here Ironing" has a rather ordinary setting. A mother performs routine household work in a rather typical home as she ponders her own maternal successes and shortcomings. Yet...

Latest answer posted November 27, 2020, 12:32 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

By the time Emily returned from the convalescent home, she had been traumatized by years of instability and insufficient nurturing. Her mother had had her as a teenager, and although she had tried...

Latest answer posted June 7, 2010, 1:32 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

The literal setting is in a simple room with a woman ironing. This act sets the mood of helplessness. No matter how many times a person irons an article of clothing, the next time it is washed...

Latest answer posted May 28, 2007, 3:41 am (UTC)

2 educator answers

I Stand Here Ironing

In "I Stand Here Ironing," our unnamed narrator is thinking to herself about a meeting to talk about her daughter, Emily. Throughout the course of the text, the mom thinks about the difficult...

Latest answer posted October 6, 2019, 12:41 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

One theme that conveys itself, in part, through setting is the theme of deprivation. The historical time period here is the Great Depression and the years of WWII. The Depression is a time of...

Latest answer posted November 5, 2010, 1:27 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

The story has numerous feminist elements. One of the strongest of such elements is the mother's history as a working woman and the information the reader learns about the inadequacy of social...

Latest answer posted March 23, 2019, 7:22 am (UTC)

2 educator answers

I Stand Here Ironing

The monologue in "I Stand Here Ironing" seems to have been prompted by a telephone call from Emily's college counselor, part of which is quoted in the second paragraph. "I wish you would manage...

Latest answer posted February 22, 2015, 10:36 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

Tillie Olsen's “I Stand Here Ironing” is a meditative piece in which a mother reflects on her oldest daughter, a girl named Emily. Emily was born during the early years of the Great Depression, and...

Latest answer posted March 31, 2021, 5:58 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

Emily's mother, the narrator, is a woman who has many regrets. She is loving and well-meaning, but guilt-ridden at the ways she feels she failed her oldest daughter Emily in her raising, and angry...

Latest answer posted February 15, 2008, 3:45 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

"I Stand Here Ironing" is a short story written by Tillie Olsen. The narrator of the story explores the role her imperfect mothering may have had on her teenaged daughter, Emily. The narrator is...

Latest answer posted October 11, 2011, 2:50 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

At the time of the setting of "I Stand Here Ironing," divorce was not common, nor was the abandonment of a father from his family. So, when Emily's mother is separated from her husband she feels...

Latest answer posted May 30, 2010, 4:28 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

This is a fairly complicated question, and I don't think there is a singular answer. It's important to consider the setting in which the narrator finds herself. She stands ironing, but she reflects...

Latest answer posted June 23, 2020, 4:15 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

The enquiry about Emily made by an unspecified person, possibly a teacher or a friend, prompts the mother to think about her daughter. The question about her daughter, with whom she is deeply...

Latest answer posted February 9, 2016, 2:40 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

In I Stand Here Ironing by Tillie Olsen, the mother is trying to explain or understand the reasons why she and Emily have the unsatisfactory relationship they have and why Emily is the way she is....

Latest answer posted October 1, 2013, 5:34 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

Emily was born during the depression, and the mother had to leave her with neighbors when she went to work. Although she nursed her daughter, she did so according to a rigid schedule because that...

Latest answer posted January 23, 2008, 8:25 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

The symbol that is most apparent when the narrator talks of her memories of the convalescent home is one of distance between the parents and their children that they sent to the convalescent home,...

Latest answer posted October 1, 2013, 5:39 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

While the author includes the mother’s memories of experiences almost two decades earlier, Tillie Olsen’s story was first published in 1954. It seems likely that she intended the reader to reflect...

Latest answer posted December 16, 2019, 10:16 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

It is easily discernible that the significance of the title of Tellie Olsen's story, "I Stand Here Ironing," cannot be ignored. For, like the act of pressing, in which the iron is moved back and...

Latest answer posted November 20, 2009, 11:13 am (UTC)

2 educator answers

I Stand Here Ironing

The mother's circumstances affect her ability to care for Emily markedly. This arise through her context and the specific chain of events she suffers. As she notes, " ''Her father left me...

Latest answer posted October 8, 2008, 9:25 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

In Tillie Olsen's "I Stand Here Ironing," the mother's internal monologue indicates her guilt over her neglect of Emily while she was forced to work and care for her other children. In fact these...

Latest answer posted June 14, 2010, 7:30 am (UTC)

1 educator answer

I Stand Here Ironing

I think that Emily is insecure and she is afraid of trying to succeed because she has been told she cannot. As Emily's mother says, Emily was, "a child seldom smiled at." That, coupled with being...

Latest answer posted March 21, 2007, 11:46 pm (UTC)

1 educator answer

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