She is the wife of Georgi Abashwili and mother to Michael. She may also be described as:
- Conceited / Vain / Arrogant
Natella thinks of herself as very superior and important. She is concerned about small matters like the baby coughing and demands that the doctors pay more attention to him. She’s even jealous of her husband concerning himself more with Michael than herself. She says, “But Georgi, of course, will only build for his little Michael.” (p.18)
She complains that the palace she lives in is a slum. She says, “It is impossible to live in such a slum.” (p.18)
She does not want to ride on horseback even in light of the prevailing danger. She says, “Such nonsense. I wouldn’t dream of going on horseback!” she still wants to be carried in a carriage which is more comfortable.
She values her material possessions more than people. When the war breaks out in the palace, she forces the servants to help her look for her dresses instead of running for their lives. She says, “I’ve got to take this silver dress – it cost a thousand Piasters…the wine coloured one?” (p.25)
She is only interested in Michael after she learns that without him, she cannot inherit Georgi’s estate.
- Contemptuous / Insolent / Offensive / Obnoxious / Spiteful / Abusive / Rude
She insults and beats up a young woman whom she accuses of ruining her dress. She tells her, “Nothing in your head, but making eyes at Shalva…I’ll kill you. You bitch!” before beating her up. (p.24)
She is rude and refers to others as ‘creatures’. She says, “What sort of creature is that, Shalva?” in reference to Azdak. (p.85). she also asks, “Is that the creature?” in reference to Grusha She also says that Michael has been living in a pigsty because he’s dressed in rags.
At the courtroom, she’s happy that there are no common people around since she can’t stand their smell which gives her migraines.
She orders the woman holding Michael to put the child down and instead go to get her, her little saffron coloured boots from the bedroom. She is irresponsible because she does not remember to find out where the child is before she leaves.
- Pretentious / Hypocritical
In the courtroom, she pretends that she’s affected by the loss of her child. She says, “A most cruel fate, sir, forces me to describe to you the tortures of a bereaved mother’s soul. The anxiety, the sleepless nights, the…” (p.92). even the cook knows how hypocritical Natella is. She says, “All the mistress was thinking was what dresses she’d take along.” (p.89)
She is also hypocritical by attending the Easter Sunday service and yet she does not live her life as a Christian should.
- Villainous / Wicked / Sadistic
She claps her hands hysterically when Azdak is lifted up and dragged under the noose. She says, “I disliked that man from the moment I first saw him.” (p.89)
Natella contributes to the overall text through:
- Plot development – she is the mother of Michael and it is her action of leaving behind the child that makes it end up with Grusha. It is because of her that Grusha has to fight in court for the right to be Michael’s mother.
- Character development – she helps in developing the characters of Gerogi Abashwili, Grusha, the two doctors, the two lawyers, the adjutant and even Azdak.
- Theme development – she contributes to themes such as: parental love, justice, materialism, hypocrisy and social class inequality.
- Style development – through her, literary styles such as irony since she ironically does not get the child and yet she’s its real mother and satire because her materialistic nature is exaggerated and ridiculed.
- Identify and illustrate the main character traits of Georgi Abashwili.
- What is the role of Georgi Abashwili in the text?
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