Introduction : In Anton Chekhov’s play The Proposal, Chubukov is a land owner and father of a beautiful girl, Natalya. His role as a responsible father and as man in the play is very significant to sum up the themes of the play. His character as a sensible father is very ambivalent.
Chubukov as a Father: Chubukov’s character as a good father is an ambiguous one. Therefore, his fatherhood is questioned by sensibility. We get different characteristic of his fatherhood. Some of the sensible elements of his fatherhood are –
i) Sensible & Responsible Father: Chubukov is a sensible and responsible father. Chubukov is a caring, sensible father to both Natalya and his business. ii) Loving Father: He loves his daughter and he is very careful about Natalya. iii) Conventional Father: He is a reflection of conventional father, having a grown up daughter.
iv) His Sebsibility: Chubukov thinks his daughter a burden and ‘weight of my shoulders’ and he desperately wants to get rid of her. Anton Chekhov’s portrayal of Chubukov considering her daughter a liability reflects the social life and mindset of the society encompassing marriage as a means to mitigate the burden of a father.
When Chubukov says, “I ought to be hanged”, his regret is more more about a social security broken off than the romantic well-being of this daughter. When he sees his daughter behaving frantically, he goes to call him back being an affectionate father. But, It seems disrespectful to him. This uncertain behaviour of Natalya is unbearable to him . So he calls it a burden to be the father of a grown up daughter.
v) Affectionate Father : He is hypocrite and pretentious. Despite being so, he is an affectionate father. When he sees his daughter behaving frenziedly, he immediately goes to call Lomov back. He wants her daughter to be happy.
ROLE OF CHUBUKOV : Chubukov plays the role of a sensible father, who is worried about his grown up daughter, Natalya. Anton Chekhov, through the character of Chubukov, expresses that marriage is more of conventional business deal subscribed to by society rather than romantic union between two people.
Conclusion : So, the character of Chubukov is full of different qualities of general human behavior and tendency. Chubukov is a significant character who plays a conventional role as father having other essential qualities of human beings.