In the novel, whenever two lovers are separated and unable to see each other, they are avoiding the disapproval of the girl's father. In none of the instances are the girl's mothers mentioned as being an obstacle to these relationships. What does this tell us about the role of mothers in determining their daughters' futures?
Not only do wives and mothers not have the opportunity for work outside the home at the time the novel is set, they also are not allowed a say in their children's relationships. Permission is asked of the father, and it is the father who metes out punishment for relationships that occur outside the bounds of what is considered to be proper behavior....
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