“The Girl with a Pimply Face”
William Carlos Williams, “The Girl with a Pimply Face” pg 62-73
Answer the following questions:
Similar to “The Use of Force”, the narrator can be identified as the protagonist.
Like “The Use of Force”, the narrator is referred to a family he is not familiar. How are the two families similar? different?
Also, the story centers around a girl who the narrator tells his wife he’s “crazy about”. How is she described? Why does he admire her?
Why is the mother asking for a new doctor? What is her complaint about the hospital?
At first, the problem, the conflict, may seem to be the diagnosing the illness of the baby, but does he seem interested in the baby during the first visit?
If the baby is not the problem, what is? Hint: His wife mentions it when he tells her about the family.
After the third visit, he comes to a realization and says, “Hell! God damn it. The sons of bitches. Why do these things have to be?” What caused him to say this? Who
is this directed at?
The narrator runs into the families first doctor, the one who delivered the baby. What the doctor’s interpretation of the family? What advice does he give the
Why do you think the narrator becomes uncomfortable? (This relates to the conflict) “But what about the young girl, I ask weakly.” What is the narrator hoping for?
How do the two doctors contrast each other?
The actually resolution is not shown. What do you think his solution is?
At the last visit, the girl and the baby seemed to have made much improvement. The girl also seems to be caring for the baby a change from earlier and has started
attending school again. Is the narrator happy? How do you know? The coda in many stories has the characters receiving rewards for their actions. Can these changes in
health and attitude be considered the narrator’s rewards?
Taking in account of the contrasting opinions of other characters towards the family and the narrator’s wishes, the theme can be interpreted as “A doctor should treat
their patients with empathy.”
Truth Value :
Does the theme represent a truth in life? Should doctors not be concerned with receiving payment? Does the fact that the story is set during the great depression
change the truth of the theme?
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