Saturday, May 07, 2022

Abbie Crunch watches from the window in Ann Petry's "The Narrows"

When Abbie Crunch in Ann Petry's "The Narrows" (1953) sees her husband being helped home, apparently drunk but actually suffering from a stroke, she watches at the window, like Henry James's novelist, invisible to the objects of her judgmental observation: "Inside the house, she waited for them, watching from the window." But on another occasion, surprised by a "repeated banging" at the door, she makes her judgment visible: "Usually she stood back from the smallpaned windows at the side of the door so that she could not be seen when she looked out. But this time she wanted to be seen, she glared out of the little windows and then frowned." (Andrew Shields, #111words, 7 May 2022)

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