Lamb to the Slaughter literary analysis from a feministic standpoint.
“Lamb to the Slaughter”
The short story, “Lamb to the Slaughter”, is written in a manner which deteriorates the values of women, making them seem of a lesser, more inferior status. Dahl describes women, almost as servants. Patrick treats her with disrespect, and the investigators give Mary special treatment because she is a woman.
Mary Maloney is a stay at home wife, who is six months pregnant. She loves her husband very much. “She sets down her sewing … took his coat and hung it in the closet” (Dahl 318). That is a very descriptive quote about the style this story was written. It says two things. One that women stay at home and sew all day, which is a stereotype, and two, that she is there two serve. She is always trying to be comforting to Patrick. She constantly tries to give him stuff, like offering him food. She even offers food and drinks to the investigators.
Mary Maloney is a victim of Patrick’s disrespect and verbal abuse. “For God’s Sake” (Dahl 319) and “Sit Down” (Dahl 319) were some of the disrespectful things and commands yelled at her. Dahl wrote this in a way in which Patrick orders her to do things when she is being polite and courteous to him. He has little respect for her and snaps at her when she offers him food and drinks. This leads her to kill him because she couldn’t take it anymore. He just overwhelmed her.