The Painted Door by Blainecheatham

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									Kenneth Pang
December 5, 1996
English 11
Block: A
Mr. A

                     Is John Guilty of Causing Ann to Commit Adultery ?
        It is evident that John is guilty of causing Ann to Commit adultery in Sinclair Ross’s
“The Painted Door.” John’s desire, for instance, reveals his intentions. In addition, John’s
low self-esteem suggests his motive. Finally, the card game showed us that John planned and
deliberately caused Ann to commit adultery.

        The purpose of John’s action is to make Ann happy. John believes that Ann is the
most important person in his life as he was described on Pg. 48 "… naively proud of Ann.”
He believes that "it seemed only right that she should have [the best].” To John, Ann
deserves a man better than a dull-witted man like himself. When John learned that Ann liked
the companionship of Steven (Pg. 52 Once she had danced with Steven six or seven times in
the evening, and they talked about it for as many months.), he conceived the plan for Ann
and Steven to fall in love. Owing to John's love and devotion to Ann, he causes Ann to
commit adultery with Steve.

         John’s intention or the reason for his action is his low self-esteem. John had so little
faith in himself that he did not believe that he can fulfill his wife’s desires. On Pg. 49, John
described one of Ann's needs, "That's what you need, Ann - someone to talk to beside me.”
When Ann reveals to us that John does not often talk to her, Pg. 50 That's what I need -
someone to talk to, John never talks, we learned that John is actually telling Ann that she
needs Steven instead of him. In addition, John believes that he was such a stupid person that
he could not do anything for his wife.
                 “To him it was not what he actually accomplished by means of the sacrifice
that              mattered, but the sacrifice itself, the gesture-something done fore her sake"
Owing to the little self-respect that he had, he decided to sacrifice his relationship with Ann
and later on his own life to show Ann he loves her.

         Ann falling in love with Steven is not an accident, but instead, a part of John’s plan.
John knew a storm was coming (Pg. 47. You said yourself we could expect a storm) so he
left the house. He then invited Steve to his house sot hat Ann and Steven were alone
together. Ann, having been flattered by Steve (Pg. 51. Such a storm to face, I should feel
flattered), fell in love with him. Moreover, Ross foreshadowed that John will carry out his
plan by the skillful use of the card game as a symbol. The fact that Ann never had a say in
the out come of the story was shown by Ann’s own words on Pg. 55, “ . . . I will watch and
let John play.” John was the person controlling the out come of the story. Ann was merely a
prize to be won. Furthermore, we can assume that John setup Ann to fall in love and have
sex with Steven owing to the fact that John planned this card game as Ann said on Pg. 58, “
We’re going to play cards, He was the one suggested it.”

       Although this story had often been taught emphasizing that Ann was the unfaithful
wife who betrayed her husband, one may still argue it was John who setups the whole
incident. John's purpose in setting them up was to make Ann happy and his reason was to
show Ann his devotion though sacrifice. Moreover, the card game as symbol was used by
Sinclair Ross as a device to unfold what really happened. Sinclair Ross never directly told
us that John was responsible for causing Ann’s adultery; however, John’s clear intention,
motives and a workable plan reveled the possibility.

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