In Response To:
The whole play
We know in this play Eliza changes a lot; from a flower girl to a real lady. What is the difference between the two characters? When she is a flower, she wears torn clothes, speaks rudely, and sees money as a tool to get what she wants. While she becomes a lady she has good manners, and decent dressing. It implies the different commands between upper class and lower class. As a lady, she has to have good manners including proper speech and greetings. Also has to dress properly. That is why she has to learn how to speak beautifully from Higgins. In the first time, she doesn't be a successful lady whom is defined to speak properly in "small talk" for she talks about the death of her aunt. It is improper to talk more about the inner of things in that occasion. What they have to do is to greet everyone and talk about something in appearance. It also implies upper class pay more attention to appearance, while don't care for the deep point of things. Upper class their actions let me feel they are quite hypocritical. I don't realize what's the small talk for. Maybe that is one of their ways to communicate with people. In the second time, when she goes to an Embassy, nobody can recognize or reveal her background- a flower girl that is out of a gutter. She is even thought as a Hungarian with royal blood. In Higgins's opinion, Eliza becomes a real lady and he indeed wins the bet. On the other hand, Eliza she begins to wonder what will become of her; she doesn't exactly know about her future. So, she argues with Higgins. What she wants is to be equal to Higgins. I think Eliza she not only becomes a real lady but also becomes more mature than Higgins. We can say, in the end Eliza can teach Higgins a lot of things such as on page 98 Eliza says to Pickering, " 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 proffer 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 treats me as a lady and always will." She wants to let Higgins know what she really wants- to be respected. She points out Higgins's bad manners toward her. She is no longer a poor girl, while she learns more from Higgins except language. The situation reverses. It seems Eliza is Higgins's teacher; she teaches him what is the correct attitude toward treating people. After all, being a good person is more important than being successful in business, isn't it?
Through whole play, Higgins is always rude to everyone, including Eliza, his mother- Mrs. Higgins, Mrs. Hill and Miss Hill. He treats everyone in his own way, and he never thinks that he is wrong or impolite. Like when Eliza first meet him, he uses an order tone to ask her "sit down". It is very rude to treat a guest, isn't it? Who will treat his guest in such impolite way? It seems to order a servant. Similarly, he treats his mother's guests as he treats Eliza. He is also a very selfish man; he never thinks about others' feelings. For example, after they come home from the garden party, he and Pickering happily talk about their winning. He doesn't notice what is the change about Eliza. He just thinks he had done his job well; he even says, "Thank God it's over." He only thinks he successfully makes Eliza become a lady and he finally wins the bet, but he never thinks what will become of Eliza. That is why Eliza quarrels with him. Although he had reminded Eliza to achieve her original goal- to be a seller in a flower shop, he doesn't realize clearly about what's on her mind. After his mother's words about what's the matter about Eliza, Higgins doesn't feel regretful but is still very self- confident. On page 95, Mrs. Higgins says, "You didn't thank her, or pet her, or admire her, or tell her how splendid she'd been." And then Higgins replies, "but she knew all about that. We didn't make speeches to her, if that's what you mean." From this dialogue we can see Higgins he is quite self- centered. He does what he wants and thinks people 'should' know what he does. He is indeed not a considerable man. No wonder, Eliza can't stand his attitude toward her. However, finally he seems to realize the importance of Eliza because she remembered where his things are and when his appointments are; that is, she is like his secretary. If she doesn't company him, he doesn't know when he has appointment. Besides, he realizes that Eliza is in the same position with him and Pickering. We can see it on page 109; Higgins says, "you and I and Pickering will be three old bachelors instead of only two men and a silly girl."
Compare the changes of Eliza and Doolittle:
They both have a high status, while they are not happy at all. Eliza doesn't get what she wants from Higgins; she is very disappointed. Although Doolittle he becomes a member of middle class; that is, he has more money than when he is a dustman, he has to worry about lots of people will ask money from him. He is not happy with the life now he has. He also has to be more moral; in other words, he has to marry Eliza's stepmother. He can't be together with a woman like Eliza's mother without marrying her. What he has to do is out of force because he has to obey middle class's morality. That is also the reason why he has to learn language, to have good manners. Eliza she also has good manners and high status, while she doesn't has as much money as Doolittle has. Maybe we can say both of them are transformed and created by Higgins.
A make up ending:
From page 85 we can see Eliza picks up the ring that Higgins sends her and then throws to the hearthrug. On page 109, although Eliza says goodbye to Higgins, it still reveals that she is willing to care for him. Higgins says, "buy me a pair of reindeer gloves, number eights, and a tie to match that new suit of mine. You can choose the color." Eliza replies, "Number eights are too small for you if you want them lined with lamb's wool. You have three new ties that you have forgotten in the drawer of your washstand." The two dialogues both revel that Eliza has become a part of Higgins's life. She also cares for him very much. So, I believe Eliza will come back to Higgins's home to live with him; the same ending as the film "my fair lady".