A Master of His Domain

A Declaration of My Views and Insight

The Reality of “The Broken Heart”

I recently read Washington Irving’s short story, “The Broken Heart.” It tells of the differences between the heart of a man and the heart of a woman. In the heart of a man, one would find the love for power, for respect, and for the control over other men. Yet, in the heart of a woman, one finds affection, sympathy, and passion for the people that she is close with. When I read this, I was taken back by how right Irving was and still is. Even in the 1700s/1800s when he wrote these stories, Irving detailed the traits of men and women that are still prevalent in today’s society. These “traits” are almost like hereditary genes that have been passed on through all humankind from parent to progeny.

I feel as though woman are much more connected with others and their emotions and feelings. I’ve seen my own mother cry about things she has seen on TV that she has had no influence in or received from. Her womanly/motherly psyche has such a connection to the feelings of others that it allows her to sympathize and genuinely feel positively and negatively inflicted. I find that really strange how woman can just be so empathetic in such a way. In my experiences, any man that watches or comes in contact with the same stimuli really shows no outward sign of affection. So seeing that Irving has made this connection also between man and woman amazes me because although he lived in a different time then do today, he too experienced the same sort of juxtaposition.


“The beauty of a woman must be seen from her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides.”  –Teresa Mahieu

(I found this quote from a poem by Mahieu titled “The Beauty of a Woman,” this truly does exemplify the soul of a woman. If one wants to discover the mystery that is women, he must look to her heart.)




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2 thoughts on “The Reality of “The Broken Heart”

  1. I thought that your ideas about women being connected with their feelings, while men are more distant from theirs were interesting. I also enjoyed the parallel you made between emotion and your mother’s emotions. I agree that women are more emotional, it’s embarrassing how much I cry while reading/watching Gone with the Wind. But, do you think that this emotion is a byproduct of a natural tendency towards emotion or a result of social expectations: Nature vs nurture. Men and women are raised very differently with very different attitudes towards emotion. This difference is getting smaller, girls and boys are being raised more similarly with similar values, but are men becoming more emotional or women any less?

    • I think it is a little bit of both actually. Women clearly produce more estrogen then men do and estrogen level fluctuation has emotional side effects. I don’t mean just like mood-swings or anything, but I do believe those higher levels make them more susceptible to emotional reactions in general. But I do think that in regards to the differences in nurturing, there have been changes in this view today, more-so women though. Mothers and even fathers have been teaching women to become more empowered and independent, which I think has attributed to their lessening of emotion and increase in emotional strength. I mean, I’m not sure how your parents raised you, but I can imagine that they have instilled the idea of being an independent, free-thinking, and strong woman in your own way as you grow up. Or maybe they didn’t, and I have no idea what I’m talking about haha…

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