In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play

Do you want more children, Elizabeth? Th

Catherine Givings

In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play

See more monologues from Sarah Ruhl



Basics

Character
Gender
Age Range
Style
Scene
Act I, Scene 2
Time & Place
Mrs. Givings’ Victorian home in a suburb outside New York City, the 1880s.
Length
Time Period
Show Type

Monologue Context

Mrs. Givings is the impulsive, genuine, and troubled wife of Dr. Givings, an expert in hysterical

Monologue Text

Do you want more children, Elizabeth? That is a tactless question, you don’t need to answer, forgive me, sometimes I say whatever is in my head. I want more children and my husband desperately wants more children but I am afraid of another birth, aren’t you? When I gave birth I remember so clearly, the moment her head was coming out of my body, I thought: Why would any rational creature do this twice, knowing what I know now? And then she came out and clambered right onto my breast and tried to eat me, she was so hungry, so hungry it terrified me - her hunger. And I thought: Is that the first emotion? Hunger? And not hunger for food but wanting to eat other people? Specifically one’s mother? And then I thought - Isn’t it strange , isn’t it strange about Jesus? That is to say, about Jesus being a man? For it is women who are eaten - who turn their bodies into food- I gave up my blood - there was so much blood - and I gave up my body - but I couldn’t feed her, I couldn’t turn my body into food, and she was so hungry. I suppose that makes me an inferior kind of women and a very inferior kind of Jesus.



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