Look At A Teacup Summary
_ Patricia Hampel
The essay ‘Look At A Teacup’, written by Patricia Hampel, shows how a simple writing helps in finding out great events. It is about the history of writer’s mother in a delicate teacup. The two major themes of this essay are relationship between a mother and her daughter and a connection between the past generation and present generation. Both these things are represented by a teacup.
The writer’s mother was married in the year 1939, the beginning of the Second World War. The same year she bought the teacups as gifts that were later given to the daughter. Hampel sees a connection between herself and her mother. The teacup reminds her of her mother’s history because her mother bought it in 1939. Through the cup the mother transfers the culture and history of her time to the daughter. So, the cup is historical memory only. It was made in Czechoslovakia, which was taken over and destroyed by the armies of Adolf Hitler.
The essay associates and removes the objective description and subjective feeling of author and teacup. The author can express lots of feeling and ideas making the teacup as a medium. She tries to compare the falling of flower in the teacup as destruction of beauty due to falling bombs. There was also cultural and social degradation. The style of this essay is stream of consciousness. So, the reader feels somehow puzzled to track down the plot of the essay. She expresses all her feelings try to compete each other. So, some sentences are fragmented. Logically they do not follow each other. The writing is beautifully decorated but the meanings are deviated.
There is symbolic meaning of the things. ‘Falling flowers’ implies the degrading situation and ‘teacups’ were human rituals and arts. Certainly the essayist refers the fall and break of culture. ‘Falling bodies’ were dying people in the war and ‘beds’ have meaning of the battlefield where the falling bodies lay. ‘The falling of bombs onto women’ means the tragic fate of these women. They had the disturbed married life. Fates of women were accursed by the war and their destiny was darkened by the war and their destiny. ‘Falling countries’ refers to the degradation of humanity, peace, progress, brotherhood, culture, etc. of the countries involved in the war. This essay presents the reality of war and shows the real picture of the world caused by the destruction due to war.