WHY IS CHAPTER 4 A TURNING POINT IN THE STORY?
I think chapter 6 is a turning point in the story because Maxime asking the narrator to marry him would change her way of living in many aspects.
In the episode at the terrace, after ordering breakfast, Maxime asks the narrator to marry him in a direct form "No, I’m asking you to marry me, you little fool".
The narrator feels insecure about her social position and tells Maxime her beliefs "I’m not the sort of person men marry", "I don’t belong to your sort of word for one thing", these quotes give the impression that she underestimates herself and thinks she is in a lower position, she tells that to Maxime by saying she does not fit there. I think she chose telling things that way to express herself and give her point of view firsthand. "What do you know of Manderley? I’m the person to judge that, whether you belong there or not". He knows that she belongs there, if not he would not have asked her to be his fiancée. Maxime said it like that because she actually does not know anything about Manderley, so he used that against her. In a nutshell, if she marries him, she would be in a higher position because Maxime is a man with power in society, is the kind of man the narrator thought would not want to be with her, but he wants and will marry her.
At one point, the narrator starts thinking about how it would be her life at Manderley and Maxime introduces her "We would be in a crowd of people, and he would say, “ I don’t think you have met my wife yet”. Then she starts imagining about her status "I considered my name, and the signature on checks, to tradesmen, and in letters asking people to dinner".
This reveals how the narrator's salary could change from a small one to one where it is possible to sign checks and invest in businesses; it also highlights how she would go from having no social life to writing letters to people inviting them over to have dinner”. Perhaps the writer's aim is to emphasize her change in status by naming the power her signature will have.
After Maxime tells the narrator about Mrs. Van Hopper's reaction to the proposal, she went to her chief. Mrs. Van Hopper tells the narrator how she would have to adapt to a totally new life, “You will have your work cut out as mistress of Manderley”. By using the phrase “your work cut out”, it creates the impression that it would be very difficult and odd for the narrator to go from being single and serving others to being married and a housewife.
In conclusion, marrying Maxime would change the narrator's civil and social status, and she will stop working for another person and start being a housewife.