A Pale View of Hills
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1.  How does Etsuko prove that women's liberty matters when it comes to making life choices, including the politics of the country?

Etsuko is married to Jiro, who has a different political opinion. According to the Japanese culture, a woman should respect her husband regardless of whatever situation. Jiro tries to use her influence to change his wife's decision to vote but in vain. Etsuko stands firm and says that she has a different opinion and she will only vote for the person of her choice. Etsuko's freedom of choice is influenced by the American culture in which women are empowered to make political choices of their own without harassment. Fellow men ridicule Jiro that he cannot control his wife in it comes to political matters. Jiro depicts the ancient Japanese culture in which a woman is viewed as a man's property but is trying to apply it in the wrong environment.

2.   What is the motif of grief in 'A Pale View of Hills'?

Keiko decides to kill herself with little disregard for the sorrow that she leaves behind for her family. The relationship between Keiko and her family was cold, but after her death, the family reunited, and they all missed her presence. Nikki traveled home to take care of her mother for a while. Keiko's mother was a survivor of war; she witnessed many people's death, even those close to her. The motif of bereavement signifies the loss of life and the suffering it leaves behind. Despite Keiko being an anti-social person, her loss is evident because the entire family is mourning her.

3.   Why did Keiko lead a despondent and unenjoyable life?

Life becomes exciting and enjoyable when one is free with others. An individual who decides to live in isolation will find it hard to be happy. Keiko falls in the category of the anti-social people who choose to lead a private and lonely lifestyle. Throughout Keiko's life, she was never satisfied because she was reclusive. Keiko's isolation made it impossible for her to have a close and friendly relationship with her family members. Life continued to become miserable, and at last, Keiko decided to kill herself.


 * Some questions from GradeSaver.

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