The Fly


Katherine Mansfield

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The Boss

The unnamed protagonist referred to exclusively as “the boss” is a successful London businessman and the former employer of Mr. Woodifield. The boss initially appears to be a man of action who has aged… read analysis of The Boss


The elderly Mr. Woodifield visits his former employer, the boss, every Tuesday in London for company. Having retired following a stroke, Woodifield is a trembling, forgetful, dim-eyed and shrunken man who spends most of… read analysis of Woodifield

The Boss’s Son

The boss’s only child and heir to the business. The boy’s death during World War I results in the boss’s loss of assured business succession—something the boss centered his whole life purpose around. Beyond… read analysis of The Boss’s Son
Minor Characters
An aged clerk who, like a loyal dog, obediently completes menial tasks for the boss. Like the rest of the staff in the London office, Macey was fond of the boss’s son.
Woodifield’s son who was killed in World War I and is buried in Belgium near the boss’s son.
Woodifield’s Daughters
Woodifield’s daughters, along with Woodifield’s wife, demonstrate female control over the infirm Woodifield. They have recently visited their brother Reggie’s grave in Belgium and discovered that his grave was near the boss’s son’s.
Woodifield’s Wife
Along with her daughters, Woodifield’s wife micromanages Woodifield’s daily activities. This control arises from necessity due to his recent stroke and rapidly deteriorating memory, but it leaves Woodifield feeling stifled and bored.