Study Guide

Emily in Ballad of the Sad Cafe and Other Stories

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Emily wasn't always stashing "empty créme de menthe bottles" (Domestic.38) in her hatboxes. Martin has his own suspicions about where her drinking problem began, when they moved from Alabama to New York, away from "the idle warmth of a small Southern town, the matrix of the family and cousinship and childhood friends [...]" (Domestic.36).

Emily, so invested in her drinking, seems not to notice that her husband has started to look at her somewhat homicidally.

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