What are some distinguishing characteristics of Mrs. Jones in the short story, "Thank You, M'am" by Langston Hughes?

Expert Answers
bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Physically, Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones is a large woman and strong enough to manhandle Roger, the boy who tries to steal her purse. She puts a half-nelson on him and escorts him back to her apartment. The woman shows her concern for the boy in many ways. She respectfully asks his name and tells him that she, too, has done thing of which she is ashamed. She is saddened by his dirty appearance, and orders him to wash his face and comb his hair. She shows her trust in him by leaving her purse within his reach and the door open. She exhibits generosity by sharing her meager dinner--ham and lima beans--with him, and instead of showing her anger or calling the police, she gives him a $10 bill so he can buy the blue suede shoes he so desires. She is a proud woman who lives on her own, and she works long hours in order to support herself.