Mrs. Warren’s Profession

by

George Bernard Shaw

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Vivie’s Cigars Symbol Analysis

Vivie’s Cigars Symbol Icon

Women who smoked broke with the conventions for young women of the Victorian era. Vivie’s cigars, along with her fondness for whiskey, suggest that she wants to experience pleasure herself, not just provide it to others as a wife, mother, or daughter. Smoking, riding bicycles, and dressing in simple clothing were all outward symbols a cohort of early feminists used to signal their independence from society’s expectations for women and their right to enter into spheres that used to be open only to men.

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Vivie’s Cigars Symbol Timeline in Mrs. Warren’s Profession

The timeline below shows where the symbol Vivie’s Cigars appears in Mrs. Warren’s Profession. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act 1
Exploitation of Women Theme Icon
Class, Respectability, Morality, and Complicity Theme Icon
...She says she doesn’t, explaining that she likes working and then relaxing with whisky, a cigar, and a detective story. (full context)
Act 4
Exploitation of Women Theme Icon
...to sit down and they can talk there. She asks him to pass her the cigar box. He remarks that cigars are so bad smelling that men don’t even smoke them... (full context)