After having read ‘Hobson’s Choice’, by Harold Brighouse, I am to concentrate on the remarkable character of Maggie Hobson. When we first get introduced to Maggie Hobson, we notice into the play that, she is very different from her two younger sisters, Alice and Vicky. The sisters are under the control of their father, but Maggie is independent around events and people in her life. She is the most controllable character in the whole play. The play is set in Salford, around the 1880’s. The women were expected to keep quiet, while they did the housework.
The readers and the viewers would be shocked to see a woman with such immense power, who is able to control the characters in the whole play. The play is based around a guy called Henry Horatio Hobson. He is a middle-class businessman who is expected to rule over his household. The men’s role in the 1880’s had a higher role in the society, than the women. The women were considered to be second-class citizen, in the society. As the play starts going, we can that Maggie isn’t happy about women in the society. We can see this dominant role, when Albert Prosser enters the shop, to see his girlfriend, Alice.
Maggie manipulates Albert by saying “This is a shop you know. We’re not here to let people go without buying”. After this scene, Albert leaves by buying a new pair of bootlaces and boots, and after leaving his old boots in for repair. Maggie has business skills, and overpowering character to make Albert Prosser (a son of an respectable solicitor) change his mind into buying something from their shop. He had only come to make ‘makes sheep’s eyes’ at his girlfriend, Alice. Maggie’s behaviour of her father, who is supposed to be the man of the house, is able to make a conversation her way.
The scene concerning the time of dinner shows the audience that she able to get what she wants, when she wants it. Hobson I’m going out, Maggie. Maggie Dinner’s at one, remember. Hobson Dinner will be when I come in for it. I’m master here. Maggie Yes, father. One o’clock Hobson Come along, Jim Hobson goes to ‘Moonraker’s’ with his friend Jim Heeler, because he has speechless after the time if his dinner. It is clear that he is not the master of his house, as well his business. Maggie is in charge of everybody, men, her sisters, and the business.
After Albert had left the shop, he is probably about what has just happened between him and Maggie. This gives a chance for Maggie, to talk about courtship to Alice. Maggie See that slipper with a fancy buckle on to make it pretty? Courting like that, my lass. All glitter and no use to nobody. As the play gets going, Maggie ends up in a relationship with Willie Mossop. Maggie sees that he has potential in bootmaking skills. She thinks that they will have a very successful business. Willie Mossop is known as a timid, not very educated. He spends most of his time in the cellar, making boots and shoes with Tubby Wadlow.
Willie is praised from a rich woman called Mrs. Hepworth. She reckons that Willie has excellent bootmaking skills, while calling a rabbit. Later on the play, Willie is be educated by Maggie, so he can handle the business in the future. When Willie is told that he is to marry Maggie, Willie tells her that he is ‘tokened’ to Ada Figgins. Willie What makes it so desperate awkward is that I’m tokened. Maggie You’re what? Willie I’m tokened to Ada Figgins. She even tells people when to go out. This is because Ada leaves with opening the shop door by herself.
The other sisters don’t have a clever for maths, when Maggie leaves with Willie to own their own business. Alice I’m not snappy in myself. (Sitting at desk. ) It’s these figures. I can’t get them right. What’s 17 and 25? Vickey (promptly): Fifty-two, of course. The sisters can’t even add up, 17 and 25 isn’t 52, it’s 42. Since Maggie had left, the business went down hill from there. This shows that the shop would only make money because of her. Willie had a hand in making the shop sell, because when he made the most beautifully handcrafted shoes, they were sold like hot cakes.
When Willie’s shop is doing so well, they are able to pay the loan( of 100) off, which they had loaned from Mrs. Hepworth. They are doing so well that, they can pay back the 100 including the 20% interest, which they promised to pay within the first year. When Hobson gets drunk and accidentally falls into the Beenstock’s cellar. She decides to sue her father for trespass and damage, so she can get her sisters married off. She gets Albert Prosser to draw up the summons. Albert says the price for trespassing and damage, ‘is one thousand pounds’, Maggie isn’t too happy with this.
She says to Hobson that, ‘you can afford hundred pounds and you’re going to pay five hundred pounds’. When Hobson has promises to pay the five hundred pounds, Maggie decides to spilt it between Alice & Vickey. Maggie gives a chance to Alice & Vickey, to make ‘a start on’ their marriage. This is evidence of Maggie being completely unselfish; she doesn’t even take a penny from the five hundred pounds. Maggie tells Albert to move the broken bits of furniture through the streets of Salford, in the morning, when he doesn’t to.
And How Maggie says it’s ‘your wedding gift to me’. Maggie is the only prescribed to Hobson, when the doctor visited him. He says that Maggie is the best ‘cure’ for the illness, which he has. He reckons that a woman is needed in the house; to make sure Hobson health is stable. Right at the end of the play, Maggie is over-powered by the man that she herself had created. This leads to an argument of naming the new business, were Hobson and Willie Mossop have a partnership. They decide on calling it ‘Mossop and Hobson’