Holiday Themes

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Alienation

The most obvious example of alienation is that of Ottilie, the crippled Müller daughter. The fact that she is made to labor intensively for the rest of the family is not in itself evidence of alienation, because all of the Müllers work hard. However, by being responsible for cooking and serving all the family's meals, Ottilie is automatically prevented from taking part in the key social events of the Müller family life: the daily meals, the wedding celebration, even her own mother's funeral. Being unable to speak isolates Ottilie from the rest of the family. This alienation is intensified by the Müllers's attitude towards her: unable to deal with their feelings about her and her condition, they simply ignore her. More attention is lavished on the cows and sheep than on poor Ottilie, who is only spoken to when a...

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This section contains 1,002 words
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Buy the Holiday Study Guide
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