Short Story Analysis: "The Judge's Wife" by Isabel Allende

Essay by vitoskin777College, UndergraduateA, October 2008

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Short Story Analysis: "The Judge's Wife" by Isabel Allende

Life is full of unexpected surprises and sometimes we can find ourselves in unpredictable and dangerous situations when the life itself depends on what we do. Most of the time in these cases we do not have a chance to carefully and rationally think over our actions and just improvise trusting our instincts and fate. Here is the example of such a bad fortune: a young woman gets stuck in a motor car in the middle of nowhere. Her husband and three little kids are with her. She knows that an army patrol is arriving to help any minute but she also knows that there is a band of desperadoes pursuing them. The woman's husband is a stubborn and severe judge "feared throughout the province" (381) and he really angered the most violent and dangerous bandit of the region, whose only desire is to put the judge "to a terrible death" (384).

Oh, by the way the husband just died from a heart attack, not being able to take the pressure of the stress and "this race to save the family" (384), so now it is only her and the definite death, breathing on the neck. The extremely cheerful situation, isn't it? Ask yourself, what would you do? Would you run, hide or fight the armed gang members? Casilda, the main character of the Isabel Allende's story "The Judge's wife", the young woman stuck between life and death, did not have much time to waste on thinking. She took the kids to the cave on the cliff and went back to the car. She prepared herself to die "as slowly as possible" (385) to gain extra time for the children. She prayed and waited, she found the solution.

Even though...