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The Second Wife

“she accepted that there was to be no happiness for her in life, so why should she ruin her existence by dreaming of happiness?”

Through this short passage from The Second Wife, it is clear that the character Nirmala learn to simply accepted her own faith. From the beginning of the story, Nirmala is sadden over the idea that her parents wanted to kick her out of the house and marry her off in arrange marriage. She did not understand why and felt as if everyone in her family will forget about her once she is gone. Nirmala’s first arrangement was canceled and was then married off to Munshiji Totaram by her mother due to financial harship. No matter how hard Munshiji tries to prove his love for Nirmala, it is always turned down. Nirmala did not grow any love for her husband but only act out as respect and sense of duty as a wife. Just from the fact that there is arrange marriage involved, one can conclude that Nirmala will feel trapped in her own faith. She does not change her views on the whole thing as she does not doubt her feelings and knows that the marriage is honestly out of duty and not love. The whole idea of marrying off the daughter is common in different cultures. In some culture parents or even grandparents create arrange marriage with older generations for financial and social status reasons. Most marriages were not based off of love. Nirmalas acceptance to the way her life is shows that she finally realized that this is faith and there is nothing she can really do about it. Her happiness does not matter in this case. There is no point in dreaming about happiness because sometimes dreams make us more disappointed.

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