In literacy class, I have read one played called “Pygmalion”. There are seven main characters, such as Eliza, Higgins, Colonel Pickering, Mrs. Pearce, Mr. Doolittle, Mrs. Higgins, and Freddy. This played is about a flower girl, Eliza has changed her identity with both internal and external. To this stage, Eliza was taught by Mr. Higgins and supported by Colonel Pickering and Mrs.Perces. Her father is Mr. Doolittle, an alcoholic man with six wives.
Eliza’s internal characteristic changes with herself confidence, knowledge of understanding, and self-respect. Below is my example evidence from the played that my group was working on.
What has CHANGED INTERNALLY in Eliza from Act 1 to Act 5?
What is the change? (Reason)
Why is it a change? (Evidence)
Eliza has internally changed with her self-confidence where she first wasn’t confidence enough to speak against Higgins to at the end of the play, she looked at Higgins and had a lot of self-confidence to argue against Higgins.
(Page # 15) “[with feeble defiance] I have a right to be here if I like, same as you.” Based on, the text we can infer that at the beginning of the play Eliza was frightening to defend herself and stand up strongly for herself. In page 15 Higgins said a woman like Eliza shouldn’t stay at the Wimpole-street but Eliza responded to Higgins weakly to Higgins and try to protect herself from being a control on a lower class like Eliza.
(Page # 16) According to text in Act I from the Pygmalion Play, when Eliza first met Higgins as the notetaker in Covent Garden, she didn’t have the self-confidence to talk against hmHiggins looked down at Eliza as quoted, “A woman who utters such depressing and disgusting sounds has no right to be anywhere—no right.” Eliza didn’t look up at him with self-confidence and she wasn’t brave enough to speak against him. Instead, she was just making a sound and look at Higgins overwhelming “Ah—ah—ah—ow—ow—oo!”
(Page # 81 ) In the text, it states “[desperate] Oh, you are a cruel tyrant. I can’t talk to you: you turn everything against me: I’m always in the wrong. But you know very well all the time that you’re nothing but a bully. You know I can’t go back to the gutter, as you call it, and that I have no real friends in the world but you and the Colonel. You know well I couldn’t bear to live with a low common man after you two, and it’s wicked and cruel of you to insult me by pretending I could. You think I must go back to Wimpole Street because I have nowhere else to go but father. But don’t you be too sure that you have me under your feet to be trampled on and talked down. I’ll marry Freddy, I will, as soon as he’s able to support me.” According to the text above, Eliza is standing up to talk against Higgins because Higgins is saying something that really affects to Eliza feeling. So Eliza just stands up, talk against Higgins to defend herself from being a bully.
In the text, it states
“HIGGINS [tempted, looking at her] It’s almost irresistible. She’s so deliciously low—so horribly dirty—LIZA [protesting extremely] Ah—ah—ah—ah—ow—ow—oooo!!! I ain’t dirty: I washed my face and hands afore I come, I did.” According to the text, how Higgins sees Eliza in a poor way because she is a lack of education and raggedy clothes. This indicates that before Eliza came to Higgins laboratory, she was looking not good and very poor.
In the text, it states
“I know. I am not blaming him. It is his way, isn’t it? But it made such a difference to me that you didn’t do it. You see, really and truly, apart from the things anyone can pick up (the dressing and the proper way of speaking, and so on), the difference between a lady and a flower girl is not how she behaves, but how she’s treated. I shall always be a flower girl to Professor Higgins, because he always treats me as a flower girl, and always will; but I know I can be a lady to you, because you always treat me as a lady, and always will.” Base on the text above is that right now Eliza is behaving very well and speaking very nice to Higgins to treat her in a good way. This shows that Eliza’s knowledge have changed a lot.
The difference between a lady and a flower girl is not how she behaves, but how she’s treated.
In this stage, Eliza was being a flower girl. As she states: “THE FLOWER GIRL [protesting] Who’s trying to deceive you? I called him Freddy or Charlie same as you might yourself if you was talking to a stranger and wished to be pleasant. [She sits down beside her basket]. Based on this text clearly shows that Eliza did not give herself respect because of money, she could even lie to people.
“LIZA [snatching up the slippers, and hurling them at him one after the other with all her force] There are your slippers. And there. Take your slippers, and may you never have a day’s luck with them!” This text reflects Higgins thinking about his slippers. He gives the value of his slipper higher than Eliza so in that time Eliza was really sad and angry to Higgins. She has self-respect so she throws the slippers to Higgins and blames him because she wants to give herself a respect. Throughout, these two pieces of evidence it shows how much Eliza has improved her self-respect from the begin till the end of the play.
People can not change all of their identity. Thus, Eliza’s internal characteristics that have not changed are below based on the confirmation from the played.
What has NOT CHANGED INTERNALLY in Eliza from Act 1 to Act 5?
What has not changed? (Reason)
How can you tell it hasn’t changed? (Evidence)
Perspective on Higgins
Based on Pygmalion story, Eliza states “THE FLOWER GIRL [resenting the reaction] He’s no gentleman, he ain’t, to interfere with a poor girl.” This clearly shows that Eliza thought of Higgins as a brute to her and his perspective will never change of thinking Eliza as a “flower girl”.
The Epilogue of Pygmalion, Eliza states, “I shall always be a flower girl to Professor Higgins, because he always treats me as a flower girl, and always will; but I know I can be a lady to you, because you always treat me as a lady, and always will.” According to this, Eliza has not changed her perspective that Higgins just thinks of her as a flower, even he says “he loves her”. Pickering’s perspective of her and his action makes Eliza to always believe that she is a lady to him. By the end of the played, Eliza still thinks that she is a flower girl to Higgins forever.
Based on the played, Eliza states, “I ain’t done nothing wrong by speaking to the gentleman. I have a right to sell flowers if I keep off the curb. [Hysterically] I’m a respectable girl: so help me, I never spoke to him except to ask him to buy a flower off me. According to this sentence, it shows Eliza past as a flower girl. She went out home every day to sell flowers as much as she can to get money.
Based on the Epilog
By the end of the played, Eliza still, has her career to sell flower based on the epilog. As it states, The colonel suggested to Eliza that she consider her former idea of opening a flower shop as a way to make and maintain a livelihood. As a conclusion, Eliza has not changed her job to be other than to sell flower.
(Page # 26 )
In the text, it states “I ain’t got no parents. They told me I was big enough to earn my own living and turned me out.” Due to the text, Eliza has been living her life without anyone taking care of. This proves that she has been living independently before Higgins’ experiment.
(Page # 96 )
In the text, it states “She knows that Higgins does not need her, just as her father did not need her.” From the quote, we can infer that her father doesn’t need her and Higgins doesn’t need her. So, at the end, she’s still living independently.