There were no wire crinolines when I was first brought here. They were horsehair then, as the wire ones were not thought of. I have looked at them hanging in the wardrobes, when I go in to tidy and empty the slops. They are like birdcages; but what is being caged in? Legs, the legs of ladies; legs penned in so they cannot get out and go rubbing up against the gentlemen's trousers.
Most significant among these women is Mary Whitney, objectively Grace’s closest personal relationship and subjectively, I think, her love interest.
In one exchange, Jordan is trying to get Grace to reveal whether or not Kinnear sexually harassed her before the murders; the viewer more or less knows that he has, or at the very least attempted to, but Grace is evasive, sidestepping the question through politesse, saying “I don’t know what you mean by improper,” telling Jordan that Kinnear did “only what was usual.” The viewer knows the gut-wrenching implications of that phrase; Jordan does not.
There are the blatantly and explicitly physically abusive men, of course — like Grace’s father and McDermott — but more haunting to me in some ways was the quiet hunger cloaked in niceness of men like Dr. Jordan. “Nice guys” who nonetheless get off on something deeply intrusive; who demand what Grace calls “forbidden knowledge; knowledge with a lurid glare to it; knowledge gained through a descent into the pit.”
After a time he thought he knew. It was knowledge they craved; yet they could not admit craving it, because it was forbidden knowledge - knowledge with a lurid glare to it; knowledge gained through a descent into the pit. He has been where they could never go, seen what they could never see; he has opened up women's bodies, and peered inside. [...] To be rendered unconscious; to lie exposed, without shame, at the mercy of others; to be touched, incised, plundered, remade - this is what they are thining of when they look at him, with their widening eyes and slightly parted lips.Now I'm wishing I had a kindle version so I could search and see if Grace and Simon had exactly the same thought about the other sex, or if the miniseries gave his lines to her for some reason.
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