The Lost Beautifulness

Diana Tello ENH 285 Englehart 22 Febuary 2012 Journal Entry #5: Anzia Yezierska’s “The Lost Beautifulness” Anzia Yezierska’s short story “The Lost Beautifulness,” is the portrayal of the common immigrant during the 1920’s in search of the “American dream. ” The main character Hanneh Hayyeh is “tired of living like a pig,” so she does whatever it takes to fulfill her place in living this dream. Mrs. Hayyeh even idolizes her son and takes much pride in the fact that he’s in the army, fighting for her to live this dream. Another character that contributes to the way Mrs.
Hayyeh perceives America is, Mrs. Peterson. Mrs. Peterson has it all; a beautiful house,stability, and money. One thing that Mrs. Peterson mentions to Mrs. Hayyeh that is very crucial is the word “democracy,” Mrs. Hayyeh completely misinterprets this word thinking that everyone in America can be financially equal. Mrs. Hayyeh has unrealistic expectations of this dream, and she later comes to realize that not everything is as good as it seems. “The Lost beautifulness,” is a story filled with many historical components.
An obvious component that is seen from the start is the famous WWI, where we see Mrs. Hayyeh ”worship” her son before he goes out and fights for America. Many men were drafted and took off to the war during these times, leaving behind the sad, but proud mothers. Another important historical component is “immigration,” where in the text we meet Mrs. Hayyeh, an Immigrant from Russia. A major factor that led to the rise of immigration during these times was to express freedom of religion, and feel the American Dream. Mrs.

Hayyeh was a Jewish woman trying to escape oppressed Russia and coming to the U. S where she later realized that here days of oppressions were not over yet. The oppression she faced in the U. S had to do with the men in her life. First, she faces her cruel landlord who keeps increasing her rent on unjust terms. Mrs. Hayyeh relentlessly tries to fight this man’s cruel acts without any fear because she thinks America and “democracy,” will help her through, and she doesn’t know that like in her religion Women are suppressed figures here too. In the domestic sphere Mrs. Hayyeh has a raditional Jewish husband who hasn’t supported her in any way through her ambitious ideas, and when her world comes crumbling down, he abandons her and lets her know that “she should’ve listened to her husband. ” Historically, and even today In the Judaism Religion, if a women wasn’t obedient to her husband, all hell would break loose. Not only Judaism but plenty of other religions indicate that a woman must obey her husband. Many men have taken advantage of that and in places like Africa, India, and even the United States domestic violence has alarmingly increased from the roots of these ideas.
Humans are entitled to mistakes and choices and by no means should a man get a free pass to emotionally, verbally, or physically abuse a female. It is understandable that woman’s religious beliefs can be very strong but there is a fine line between religion and humanity. It is also imperative to understand that the religious interpretations that women receive, if any, are taught by men, so they may not even have credentials from the actual works of the text from the particular religion.
These interpretations are likely altered to be at the convenience of the men, and women often have lack of knowledge which leads to their vulnerability. Many women believe they have to tolerate abuse because of the subservience they have towards their husbands. Slowly, here in the U. S we are managing to move away from this but today there are still many third world countries we’re trying to help progress, and break away from unreasonable perspectives.

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