Fay Weldon’s “IND AFF” is a love story that takes the reader inside the protagonist’s feelings. The protagonist narrates her feelings towards her classical history professor whom she is deeply in love with. This trip is intended to be pleasant and relaxing, and where the couple is going to decide the future of their adulterous love. The story takes place in Sarajevo’s historical landmarks where Archduke Ferdinand was assassinated by a young man called Princip. Professor Peter is twenty years older than the student, and he has been married for twenty four years. Since the professor is supervising the student’s thesis, she depends on him for her academic future (Weldon 202). The student’s feelings take a sudden turn when she starts to compare the consequences of her actions to young Princip’s action, which triggered World War I. Weldon uses the setting of Sarajevo’s history to resemble the consequences of the couple’s love affair.
Weldon brings Archduke Ferdinand’s wife early in the story to help the reader see the similarities between her and professor’s wife, “Don’t forget his wife: everyone forgets his wife, the Archdukess” (Weldon 201). The young student prefers to leave the archduke’s wife nameless through the narrative, but an important figure in the assassination. The student feels that she has an immense advantage over Peter’s wife, “I was winning hands down. It didn’t seem much of a contest at all” (Weldon 202). The student affirms her love for Peter, and wishes his marriage with Mrs. Piper to be over. But she is also aware and concerned about Peter’s wife: “It was raining on his wife, too”…” The longer the indecision went on the longer Mrs. Piper would be left dangling in uncertainty and distress” (Weldon 202). The young student enjoys her relationship with the professor, but she is aware of the damage this may be causing to Peter’s wife.
The young student tries to clear her conscience by taking her sister’s...