Well educated, well employed and a salary far from disaster

The narrator absorbs these comments, but does not let herself be discouraged in her quest for a piece that can be called her own. The spur of the novel lies in the insistent modesty of its demands, proof of the constraints imposed on its imagination. Probably the most transgressive thing she does is buy a Molton Brown facial cleanser after using it at her roommate’s parents, a little act of sucking that will mean “giving up all thoughts of lunch for a few. days”.

“Three Rooms” evokes the reality of living in a world where reasonable demand is categorized as unreasonable. “When did it get ridiculous,” the narrator wonders, “to think that a stable economy and a fair housing market were reasonable expectations? “She is criticized for the audacity of her ordinary desire, for the Molton Brown soap, for an apartment” I could have put a sofa in there, painted there … whatever color I wanted, stayed long enough to find colleagues who invite to dinner and a drink. worthwhile task.

Eventually, even these hopes are sterilized. As the book draws to a close, the narrator retreats to the third of the titular rooms, to her childhood home, “a house with thin walls” which “would not be mine either.” The narrator cannot help seeing it as an admission of failure, a fall from “the highest echelons the country had to offer”; at the station, on the way to her parents’ house, she wants to ask the crowd: “Am I invisible to you?”

While looking for accommodation, the narrator looked for a place that is not only physical, but also psychological. She seeks space to unfold, to articulate the parameters of her being. On the last page, a passage from “A Room of One’s Own” by Virginia Woolf (from which the epigraph is also taken) rushes into the narrator’s head: “It was a straight, dark bar, a shadow in the shape of something like the letter I.She said: “All year long there had been a sound that rose in me, I never said it well. I got up and over the stained seats, stained windows, in the car I screamed – I.This short, hard-earned speech collides with the indifferent rumble of the train, which continues to drive her home.

About Paul Cox

Paul Cox

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