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Word Count: 2,709
Do maternal instincts come natural to women Shelagh Delaneys treatment of motherhood in her drama A Taste of Honey is often greatly distorted deviant from the traditional view of this concept The mother-daughter relationship between Helen and Jo is characterized by feelings of abandonment and painful disjointedness contrastingly Geof Jos homosexual roommate provides Jo with the maternal love and care that she lacks from Helen Nevertheless despite Jos attempts to separate herself from her mother her behaviour is often a direct parallel of Helens While Geof does offer Jo true affection and love Helens inability to adopt a motherly role corrupts not only her relationship with Jo but Jos capacity to have relationships with others as a result this cycle of misplaced maternity is perpetuated hampering Jo from feeling comfortable with what is arguably her biological destiny as a woman No longer a child and not yet an adult Jo is brought up in a hostile environment that does not cherish or nurture traditional maternal instincts Almost immediately the reader understands what kind of life young Jo has been living with her mother Helen Before one line from the character of Helen is spoken she is already described to the reader as a semi-whore in the stage directionsthat is a semi-whore with an impressionable daughter in tow Jos mother is a broke alcoholic who spends the majority of the day complaining but doing nothing to help herself Several times Jo criticizes her mothers drinking habits of which Helen either ignores or defends saying that a glass of whiskey consoles her Delaney 8 The new building they have moved into is run-down and dilapidated and extremely small Jo laments what I wouldnt give for a room of my own revealing that shes been devoid of this pleasure of personal privacy for quite a while Delaney 8 Evidently Jo is unhappy and has grown quite tired of their rootless lifeAn inversion of the traditional concept of motherhood
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