Reading progress update: I've read 6%.

The Victorian Chaise-Longue - Marghanita Laski, P.D. James

'Will you give me your word of honour,' said Melanie, 'that I am not going to die?'


The doctor said, 'It's a stupid thing to ask of me. Of course you're going to die, and so am I, and so is Guy, and in the end even Richard is going to die. What you're really asking me is whether you're going to die soon of tuberculosis, and to that the answer is no, though I'm not giving any word of honour about it." 


Melanie reared up from the nest of pillows. 'Why not?' she demanded. 'Why won't you, if you're really sure?'


The doctor said sternly, 'Lie down.' He waited until she had obediently let herself sink back into the big square pillows [...] 'Jumping around like that,' he said with a mock reproof. 'Do you wonder why I won't give give any promises?'


Thought this would be a good quote to share since a few of my followers are participating in "The Yellow Wallpaper" group read. It's the opening to "The Victorian Chaise-Lounge," and already it shows similar "doctor/man infantilizing a woman" dynamics. It'll be interesting to see what an author from the 1950s did differently with the concept.


I imagine the main character, Melanie, isn't going to fare well when she hits the "time-travels into a Victorian horror" part of the story, though...


EDIT: Here's a few more similarities: The doctor goes on to tell her no high jinks or frolicking, and that she needs to "treat herself like a piece of Dresden china" by resting. In addition to her illness, the main character is recovering from birth and isn't allowed to see her child in case it stresses her out.