What Some Women Think Men Expect From Them

 What Some Women Think Men Expect From Them


Malda met Mr. ford at the calceolaria, a place where highly thoughtful musicians and highly musical thinker would gather to eat.  Mathews was an ex-newspaper man and a future book writer.  He was a passionate man who enjoyed music, and he also like the little place we lived in. Moreover, he liked our company and so did I. Mathews have friends in very high places. However, Most evening he would come and sit on our balcony and we would chat and sometimes we would go hiking during the day. And sometimes he would invite us for an afternoon tea, made on gipsy fire where he organized his workshop.

Malda was a great artist. She designed and did embroidery. She was very talented and her works were extremely attractive.  She made drawings from flowers, leaves, and things about her.   She was very passionate about her works because that was the thing that completed her.  She likes music, nature and every little admirable thing about it. When Malda an I sit and talked about our environment, she would tell me how she sees up here as a place where she gained all the little beautiful things she had desire and all the big things that put joy and confidence in one’s life and can push you to accomplish great and splendid works. Malda and I shared the beautiful and peaceful cottagette.  We were happy of the vast size of the view and did not have to worry about anything except when the soft musical thrill of the gong stole through the tree, and we hurried off to the calceolaria.

One thing Malda, Mathews and I had in common was that we were all into music. In fact, I was a pianist, a really good one, and Malda enjoyed watching me played. I was quite older than Malda. Nevertheless, I appeared younger than my actual age.

I have noticed that everyday malda was getting closer and closer to Mr. Ford. She was starting to fall for him. It was clear to me that she was in love with Mathews but I did not think she knew it herself.

“You beginning to love Ford Mathews –do you know it “? I asked her.

Yes, she replied with little doubts.

“Does he love you?” I asked

‘’ It is early to predict. She told me “

It was cleared that she did not know how Mr. Ford Mathews really felt about her. Malda and I had a really good relationship. We trusted and liked each other. Therefore, I felt like I was responsible for her.  ‘Men would fall for anything’. “They like music, romantic talk and beauty”. Moreover, They will fall for your beauty and your dreams but in the end what they really care about is domesticity. They want to marry someone who can do housework, especially someone who knows her way around the kitchen.  ”Trust me it is the truth”. I have been married before, long ago when I was just a girl. It was not the type of marriage a young girl would hope for. There was no happiness. Jerome was a bit older than I was when we got married. Unlike Mr. ford, he was neither into music nor the romantic type. He’s passion was work and spending time at the town local bar. I was more like a servant than a wife to him and sometimes I think that’s what kept him around during the time we spent together. I would cook, wash dishes, do laundries and iron his clothes.  All I get in return was nothing. No love, it was plain agony and I have learned from it all.

To have a home, one must have a kitchen. That’s the ideal of a home to me. My mother has taught me how to be a good homemaker. I knew how to cook very well and do other housework. Malda was in love with Mr. Ford Mathews, and a perfect way to get a man to marry you, is to show him you are a good homemaker since all the really care about is domesticity. Therefore, I insisted that we get kitchen in order for Malda to please Mr. Ford Mathews and win his heart.





I have chosen a part of the story “the cottagette” to retell. The narrative style used in the story is the first person narration, which mean the story is focus on one person’s perspective. I have kept the same narrative style, but change the main narrator to another. In the story Malda is a young woman who is attracted to a man name Mr. ford Mathews and her friends Lois is advising her on what she thinks men want in women and what women should do to keep a man happy. Although in the original story the narrator tried to express her point of view in a very understanding way, in the retelling story you get a clearer understanding and a slightly change in Lois thoughts because she is now controlling her thoughts as the narrator instead of having Malda.

Having Lois as the narrator brings more life to her point of view rather than having Malda telling her story. Lois thoughts are slightly different now because she is the one directing her feelings to us now.  If we look at the second paragraph of the new version of the story, and from lines 8 to 11 in the original story, there is a minor change in expression in the way Malda described her works and views on things than the way Lois described them in the retelling version. Lois is Malda best friend and roommate; therefore, one can say they are pretty close. Lois sees Malda works in a more profound way than Malda sees them. She is able to realize than Malda works is one thing that put joy in her life and that she was very passionate about what she did. For example, Lois mentioned that Malda works were extremely attractive. Moreover, she likes music, nature, and every little admirable thing that relate to nature. Therefore, one can tell that Lois really admired Malda works, and as a friend, she pays good attention to her friend.

Another good approach on Lois focuses as a narrator as oppose to malda is how she is able to quickly notice her friend falling for Mr. Ford and how she relates things together. In paragraph 3 in the new version, Lois explains how Malda, Mr. ford and herself are all passionate about music, and it is one thing that connected them together. We can conclude that music played a major role in their life as individual and as friends.  Lois played the piano really good and Malda really liked to listen to her piece, and Mr. Ford Mathews was someone who enjoyed music a lot. In addition, Lois was able to rapidly draw a conclusion that Malda was falling for Mr. Ford because of how close the two couple have gotten to each other due to a lot of time they have spent together. In the original story Malda mentioned “You beginning to fall for Mr. Ford and you cannot even see it said Lois”. However, there weren’t enough details that showed us how she noticed such thing because as Malda the narrator, she does not have a lot of access to Lois thoughts. Fortunately, the new version provides that information because as Lois the narrator, we get full access in her thoughts.  Malda and Mr. Ford would see each other more than often. They would go places together and he was always in the house. As a result, she has gotten very close with him and it lead to her falling for him. Therefore, having Lois as the narrator help us understand her point of view much better than having Malda as the narrator.

In the retelling story, we get more out of Lois’s perspective on what men desire in women and on what she has been through in her past than it is detailed in the original story. Her point of view is more expressive now because she is the one directing to us her thoughts and experience. In the original story, Malda mentioned, “ of course man would fall in love, “but what they want to marry is a home maker, said Lois”. However, it doesn’t say how Lois came up with such conclusion. In the new version Lois state “trust me I know”; I have been unhappily married long before when I was a young girl. As a result, that is the reason why Lois thinks that without a kitchen you cannot call your place a home. Moreover, in order to get a man to marry you, being able to perform housework is a must.  Lois have learned a lot from the past and gained a lot of experience. We can assume that being a homemaker was a major key in Lois’s relationship back then and that the reason why she keep on rejecting every man who revealed his feelings for her

With Lois as the narrator, it is easier to comprehend her feelings and to be able to see how her past experiences has affected her life as an individual.  In the retelling story, Lois mentioned, “I was treated more as a servant than a wife”. In her case, domesticity was the key to the relationship. They had nothing in common. She was trapped in his world back then as she is now for thinking being a homemaker will make Malda wins Mr. FORD’S heart.  In the original story malda pointed out Lois’s point of view but gave little details because she doesn’t have that access Lois has when she is the one narrating the part. Therefore, having Lois as the narrator gives us a clearer meaning of her perspective toward Malda and Mr. Ford relationship.


Utopia and Dystopia in the two stories by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

First of all, to define the terms “Utopia” and “Dystopia” in a dictionary, Utopia is an ideal place or state which has any visionary system of political or social perfection. Dystopia is the antonym of “Utopia” which is defined as a society characterized by human misery, as squalor, oppression, disease, and overcrowding.
Between the two stories “The cottagette” and “The yellow wall paper”, it is obvious which one is which. The cottagette shows us an example of a liberal form of marriage even in an era where people’s attitude toward the gender roles is very conservative. Whereas “The yellow wall paper” shows us how strictly the wife is controlled by her husband.
In the cottagette, Mr. Mathews proposes to Malda a condition in their marriage that she musn’t do house work but must keep doing what she loves as an embroidery artist, and he takes the part of cook which he has been for his life. People’s idea of typical gender roles today is getting more equivocal in their marriage comparing to the setting of the story in early 20th century. People tend to respect what their partners do regardless of their sex in the modern society. However, Mr. Mathews idea must be an unusual surprise. The outcome of their marriage life isn’t written in the story. So we’re only able to imagine if Mr. Mathews suggestion would work well for them. It might be a tough challenge in the time, or might successfully work. In any case, I believe his is the novel approach and respectful thought toward what she does is the very factor of Utopia which actually means the progress of a woman’s right.
On the other hand, in the Yellow Wall Paper, Mr. John’s attitude toward his wife is oppressive about her self-expression, although he really loves her and worries about her as both positions of a husband and a doctor. We could read that he never intended to hurt her from the context. However, I think he doesn’t see her as an person rather as his possession. So she should not have any duties and also any rights. I believe human beings construct their identity and the meaning of their existence through interaction with others in the society or express themselves freely. What if your freedom of expression and exchanges with others are taken away because you are supposed to be an obedient wife and exist as just an accessory to your husband. Nervous breakdown could occur at any moment like it happened to John’s wife.

Blogging for Wedneday, 2/20’s class

If you’ve been asked to blog for Wednesday’s class, that means that you need to complete your post by the end of the weekend. Everyone else needs to comment by 10:00am Wednesday. I’ve come up with several topics, but would love to hear others you’re interested in or want your classmates to attempt to address:

Choose three quotations from “The Yellow Wall-Paper” that convince you that the protagonist is an unreliable narrator and explain why for each.

Choose three quotations from “The Yellow Wall-Paper” that present the married couple’s relationship, and explain what you understand about John as a character, and about the protagonist as a narrator for the way she depicts John.

We might use the words utopia and dystopia to describe the two short stories by Charlotte Perkins Gilman that we read. What do those words mean? Which story is utopian and which is dystopian? Why?

How do the different settings come into play in these two short stories by Gilman? In what ways might we read the settings as similar but the inhabitants of those worlds as different?

Is Malda a reliable narrator in “The Cottagette”? why or why not? Incorporate quotations into your answer to support your argument.

In what ways is “A Rose for Emily” similar to other texts we have read? different? What do you think about those similarities and differences?

The narrator in “A Rose for Emily” is different than others we have encountered. What term would you use to identify the narrator? is it a reliable narrator? Use evidence from the story to show why you say reliable or not.

This might be your first time posting, but it’s no longer new for us to read posts and comment, right? We’re getting really good at it! Let’s keep the good efforts going: when writing a post, remember to include a title that reflects what you’re writing (it shouldn’t be able to apply to everyone’s post and can certainly be longer than one word), choose appropriate categories and tags (or add if you want a tag that isn’t there already), write at least 300 words, proofread, and publish! If there are links or media you want to include, please do. Commenters, please contribute100-150 words, proofread, and leave your reply. If you want to leave additional replies, you don’t need watch the word count, but you should still proofread! You can always go back and edit!


demur : verb :To voice opposition; Law To enter a demurrer.

from the story ” The Cottagette “, i demurred  a little, it was monday, Mrs. Fowler thought it was cheaper to have a woman come and wash, and we did, but it certainly made more work.

i now understand that the author was showing reluctance to Ford Mathews  request, “one day he came around early and asked me to go up hugh’s peak with him”.

The Cottagette And Women and Economics

Does the short story “The Cottagette” present a solution to the issues raised in Gilman’s non-fiction “Women and Economics”? Explain your stance.

I do believe that “The Cottagette” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman presents a solution to the issues raised in “Woman and Economics” also by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. Some of the issues that she raises are that women are the only species that depend on men for survival. She doesn’t believe that women are any lower than man and they need to get rights and be equal. She argues that women need to change how people view them and what society expects from them.

The solution from “The Cottagette” changes the idea that woman have about marriage and what they believe all men want. If all men were like Malda’s husband and not expect women to be their cooks and house maids then the idea of marrying just for that wouldn’t exist. He says “It is not true, always, my dear,” said he, “that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach; at least its not the only way.” ( last paragraph)


Gilman argues that women take on too much of a role in the marriage, more than the men, and do not get enough credit which created an image for women as unpaid workers. Some women believe that it is their duty to serve for their husband and only get married for that reason. Lois says “What they care for most after all is domesticity. Of Course they’ll fall in love with anything; but what they want to marry is a homemaker.”She gave her that advice to make her house more homey and have a real kitchen and cook for her husband thinking he wanted that but he wanted the opposite. Malda’s husband only wanted her to continue her hobbies and what she wanted to fulfill her dreams.


The Cottagette by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

The “Cottagette” portrays what female roles were like during the 1900’s, for example when Malda expresses her rational thoughts about Ford Mathews, Lois States “What they care for most after all is domesticity. Of Course they’ll fall in love with anything; but what they want to marry is a homemaker.”  This statement is eye opening for Malda because through out the story we can distinguish how Malda is trying very hard  to cook and be a homemaker, it amuses me how a women was comfortable with settling to simply be a homemaker. Gilman shows the stereotypical concept that the role of a women in marriage is to be a homemaker. She explains it is not the only thing women are adequate at but women are also resourceful. Ford Matthews states in the story “it is not true, always, my dear, that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.” This acknowledgement displays that it doesn’t always have to be “bread and butter” to fulfill a guys needs. Later on in the story we come to realize that Ford Matthews doesn’t just want Malda to be a homemaker, he inspires Malda to do what shes good at and she confesses it. She states “i dont want to cook–i want to draw.” Ford asked Malda to marry him but he had a condition which was, Malda had to give up cooking and continue to do what she loves to do which is draw as he would take on the role of cooking which shows true love and equality in a marriage.

“The Cottagette” as a feminist text.

“The Cottagette” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, can be looked at as a feminist text because of the year it was written and the tone of the story. By the early 1900’s women were fighting for their equality of rights. In either a relationship or marriage women had to be housewives and do all the household duties while their other halves worked. They stayed home all day either taking care of the children, doing  laundry, cooking, cleaning the typical role of the women was rarely questioned until women started to speak out saying they are able to do more than what society wanted them to do.

The reason why I can consider this a feminist text because Gilman says “Lois likes to do housework, but it spoils her hands for practicing… I always work best in the morning; but of course housework has to be done in the morning to; it is astonishing how much work there is in the littlest kitchen”(page 5, paragraph 5).  Here it clearly says that Lois likes what she has to do on a daily basis and you see this first hand on a woman’s perspective that enjoys what she does.  Also another reason why this can be viewed as a feminist text is when Gilman writes “The Cottagette” I loved unreservedly. It was so little and new and clean, smelling only of its fresh planed boards—they hadn’t even stained”(page 1, paragraph 9). It shows that she appreciates the little things in life.

The Cottagette is a symbol throughout the story which I believe represents all housewives, who have a little place in the house to call their own which is the kitchen. Where they are in control of what takes places in there and it’s what most men don’t interfere with, which is to keep the house in order. Gilman molds Lois, as the inspiration to most women who take pride in what they do.

Blogging on Tuesday for Wednesday’s class

If you were asked to blog by 5:00 on Tuesday so that everyone can comment on your posts by 10:00am Wednesday, what do you plan to blog about? Here are some ideas, but I hope others will reply here with other ideas.

  • In class we looked at a selection from “Women and Economics” about housework. Does the short story “The Cottagette” present a solution to the issues raised in Gilman’s non-fiction “Women and Economics”? Explain your stance.
  • We began discussing the issue of narrator reliability. Consider narrator reliability in “The Cottagette” or “The Yellow Wall-Paper” or compare the two. Include examples by quoting from the text to show what informs your sense of reliability.
  • “The Yellow Wall-Paper” was once believed to have been out of print from 1920 until feminist scholars re-discovered it in the 1970s. Here are two possible topics to consider based on this statement:
  • How do you read “The Yellow Wall-Paper” or “The Cottagette” as a feminist text? What does that mean?
  • According to one examination of “The Yellow Wall-Paper” and its publication history, the story did remain in print in between its reprint in 1920 and its feminist re-discovery in the 1970s–in horror story collections. In what ways do you see “The Yellow Wall-Paper” as a horror story? Include specific references to the text to support your claims.
  • What connections do you see among the stories assigned from the start of the semester and either or both of Gilman’s stories? Are there trends you can identify? Or contrasting situations/characters/styles that are worth noting in their difference? Be specific!

These are just a few ideas that you might consider. For your post, choose one of these, or venture off on your own topic, using any of these as a guide to make sure your topic is as focused. Use the texts to guide you, consider that your audience will have read the same materials but might not have thought about them as much as you have or in the same way that you did, and enjoy sharing your ideas. On the nitty-gritty end of things, remember to include a title that reflects what you’re writing (it shouldn’t be able to apply to everyone’s post and can certainly be longer than one word), choose appropriate categories and tags (or add if you want a tag that isn’t there already), write at least 300 words, proofread, and publish! If there are links or media you want to include, please do.

Commenters–get ready! Everyone who isn’t writing a blog post will need to comment by 10:00am Wednesday, so make sure you’re ready to comment on your classmates’ work with 100-150 words of insights and reactions to share with the class.

“The Cottagette”: solutions to “who will do the housework” dilemma

In the short story “The Cottagette” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, the protagonist Malda recounts her brief transformation from an embroidery artist to a housewife, done in an attempt to win the heart of a man she’d fallen in love with. The story itself serves as a critique of 19th century conventions, most notably, that a woman would not be able to find love or marry if she did not offer herself as a housewife to he prospective husband. There are two main solutions to this whole “who-will-do-the-housework” problem that arises when the possibility of a woman not doing all the domestic work comes up:

At the very beginning of the story, Malda descries the “cottagette”, and takes note that it lacks a kitchen area. But this doesn’t seem to be a problem for her, or the other people living with and near her: “You had to go quite a way through the meadow… to reach the town-connecting road below. But in the woods was a little path, clear and wide, by which we went to meals” (Gilman); this shows that she and the others living in the cottagette with her have no need for a kitchen or to do any of the cooking themselves, because they hired someone else to do it for them. This leaves them with more time to peruse their own artistic interests, such as music (or embroidery, in the case of Malda).

While this works for the characters in the story, this type of living isn’t financially feasible for everyone. To that, the story offers an alternative route: for both spouses to share the housework, as opposed to leaving the all of it to the wives. “’Of course the things taste good—but so do my things! I’m a good cook myself” (Gilman) says Ford, the man with which Malda has fallen in love. This, more than anything else, shows that he truly does care for her, and wants a partner in marriage as opposed to a live-in-maid. It also serves as a solution to those who cant afford to hire others to do their housework.

the overuse of adjectives

hi everyone I’m so sorry this is late. I’m a manager/supervisor at Stop and Shop and with this snow storm i was stuck at work all weekend because customers like to over-react.

I read the short story The Cottagette from The Forerunner, Volume 1 by Charlotte Perkins Gilman.

I for one had to read this short story twice to fully understand it. The first time when I read it my mind was spinning because of the amount of adjectives that she uses. The author really does an excellent job of painting an image through words. Her sense of imagery is amazing.

Some of  her uses of adjectives in  the story I really liked the way she worded certain things like ” The working basis of the establishment was an eccentric woman named Caswell, a sort of musical enthusiast , who had a summer school of music and the “higher things”. Malicious persons, not able to obtain accommodation there, called the place “High C” The one adjective i liked was “eccentric”.Eccentric refers to unusual or odd behavior that contrasted to what is considered normal behavior.

In one paragraph of the story she says “There was one big room and two little ones in the tiny thing, though from the outside you wouldn’t have believed it, it looked so small; but small as it was it harbored a miracle– a real bathroom with water piped from mountain springs. Our windows opened into the green shadiness, the soft brownness, the bird-inhabited quiet flower- starred woods. In this one half of a paragraph the author in my opinion uses way too many adjectives to describe the cottage  Her overuse of adjectives made my head spin. The author says that her windows opened to view the “green shadiness, the soft brownness, the bird-inhabited quiet flower- starred woods”. WHAT? Couldn’t she just say that when she looked out her window she saw the woods, filled with birds and flowers. That’s it. It was an unnecessary part of the story.

I understand imagery and i understand how important it is for fiction and literature. I just feel that for me there is a line and she crossed it. This short story was very boring and really didn’t have much of a story to it.


Procession: noun: a group of individuals moving along in an orderly often ceremonial way.

From “The Cottagette”: “The grass swept up to the door-step, to the walls–only it wasn’t just grass of course, but such a procession of flowers as I had never
imagined could grow in one place.
” (paragraph 11)

Now I understand that the grass and flowers swept in a orderly fashion or perhaps they were put there.