I imagine that there’s some significance to jumping from Brave Orchid, the doctor who treats the sick and avoids the dying, to Brave Orchid, the woman who has to admit her ill sister to an asylum in order to protect her children. As was said in class, this story was really the first in which we see Brave Orchid’s tenderness, and the fact that it’s revealed alongside the progressive illness of her sister definitely leads me to want to closely read the wording around Moon Orchid’s admittance to the state mental asylum. I’ve done a lot of research in the past on deinstitutionalization so my mind immediately goes to the push away from isolated institutionalized care toward community-integrated care (in which individuals can leave at any time, which is very unlike most care provided even today). I’m really not sure what the impression of asylums would’ve been at the time of these events and/or of this storytelling, though I imagine they’d be at least a little different than that of today. Do y’all think it’s meant to be seen as isolated or integrated? Like a cruel decision or the best decision? And what does this say about Brave Orchid’s relationship with disability inside and outside of her medical role?
interpretation of asylum