Fe: Joan is happiest when her friends are happy with one another; dealing with their emotional angst distresses her. She has a hard time putting her own wishes (to be a lawyer) ahead of doing what her fiancée wants her to do (be a housewife). Joan finds it easy to read people and picks up on the emotional atmosphere of a room. She believes in the traditional social values of the period (keeping moral laws, appropriate behavior).
Si: She respects and participates in school traditions and has a high regard for “the way things have always been done.” Even though she thinks hard about choosing a career over being a housewife, she ultimately settles into what is most comfortable for her – a deeper desire in keeping with tradition but that sincerely will make her happy. She has a good memory for details and a rich appreciation for the past.
Ne: Her ability to pick up on what goes unsaid makes her aware that Betty’s marriage is failing, with hardly a negative word between man and wife. She quickly discerns that Katherine has a bad attitude toward housewives and mothers, and calls her out on it. She is reluctant at first to embrace new ideas and artwork, but learns to appreciate it and consider different options for her future life.
Ti: Practicality comes in handy when doing schoolwork and keeping her friends in line. Joan can be objective if she needs to be, and notices the hypocritical things in both herself and others.
Joan Brandwyn: Sunflowers. Vincent Van Gogh. 1888.
Katherine Watson: He painted what he felt, not what he saw. People didn’t understand, to them it seemed childlike and crude. It took years for them to recognize his actual technique. To see the way his brush strokes seemed to make the night sky move. Yet, he never sold a painting in his lifetime. This is his self-portrait. There’s no camouflage, no romance. Honesty. Now, sixty years later, where is he?
Giselle Levy: Famous.
Katherine Watson: So famous, in fact, that everybody has a reproduction. There are post cards…
Connie Baker: We have the calendar.
Katherine Watson: you go. With the ability to reproduce art, it is available to the masses. No one needs to own a van Gogh original, they can paint their own. Van Gogh in a box, ladies! The newest form of mass-distributed art; paint by numbers.
Connie Baker: "Now everyone can be van Gogh. It’s so easy. Just follow the simple instructions and in minutes, you’re on your way to being an artist.“
Giselle Levy: Van Gogh by numbers?
Katherine Watson: Ironic, isn’t it? Look at what we have done to the man who refused to conform his ideals to popular taste. Who refused to compromise his integrity. We have put him in a tiny box and asked you to copy him.