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MonkeyNotes-Miss Lonelyhearts by Nathanael West
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Miss Lonelyhearts and the Fat Thumb

Summary

Miss Lonelyhearts is obsessed with order, and the chaos in the world around him irritates him. He remembers Betty and decides to go and visit her. Two months ago, he had asked her to marry him, but had never visited her since. Initially, Betty tries to be silent and unaffected by him but just before he leaves, she confesses her love for him. Then she begins to cry, begging him to leave her alone, and confesses that she is happier without him.


Notes

The unchecked disorder and confusion in the world around, perturbs Miss Lonelyhearts immensely. His tongue, turning into a fat thumb is symbolic of his guilt for not having enquired after Betty for so long, especially after proposing marriage to her.

This part clearly brings out the condition of love relationships, in a world without any faith or belief in the all-powerful. Confusion clouds love and relationships are formed only on the basis of need. All relationships and friendships are selfish and everyone uses the other person for their own convenience. Betty wants nothing to do with such a relationship. She doesn’t want to be used and so, in spite of being in love with Miss Lonelyhearts, urges him to leave her alone because she is happier that way.

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MonkeyNotes-Miss Lonelyhearts by Nathanael West
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