Synopsis by Eleanor Mannikka
More than a storyline with a beginning, middle, and end, this tale of a foundry worker who engages a woman -- and fellow worker -- to do housekeeping for him is a tale that holds up the Hungarian social system against the morality of an exploitative male-female relationship. After his wife dies, the rough-cut and intentionally nameless "man" (Jozsef Madaras) eventually coerces the "woman" (Julianna Nyako) into doing his housework for a small remuneration. Everything goes along passably well for awhile, until the man adds in more household responsibility in the form of chickens to raise. Due to extra work at the factory, the woman cannot tend to the chickens as she should and the result is that some of them die. The man is furious, verbally abuses her, and then rapes her. Later, the woman discovers she is pregnant, with dire consequences. Throughout the story, the lack of any real identity for the "man" or "woman," as well as other subtle references to the Hungarian state add a political dimension that gives greater meaning to the story.
abuse, exploitation, housekeeper, pregnancy, rape, women's-issues