Helene Cioux: The Laugh of the Medusa The Laugh of the Medusa is about how women shouldn’t be afraid to express themselves through literature. The article is written from a feminist’s point of view. According to the article, women are afraid to write in a world that is controlled by men. I chose a paragraph from the article to summarize: “Men have committed the greatest crime against women. Insidiously, violently, they have led them to hate women, to be their own enemies, to mobilize their immense strength against themselves, to be the executants of their virile needs.
She calls the women “foul contending rebel[s]” and “graceless traitors” to their husbands. The fact that Katherine insulted the wives is another way she shows her dominance among the women and the unkind, look downed upon, nature that is put upon the wives. Ironically, Katherine also states that a women who do not obey her husbands are “muddy,” “ill-seeming,” and “bereft of beauty” implying that these wives are these characteristics because of their disobedience to their husbands. Using these words, Katherine patronizes and reprimands these wives publicly almost as if she was teaching them a lesson on how to be true wives. The condescending tone that Kate uses on these wives is a basically a scolding for their disobedience and also a lesson on why wives should submit to their husbands so humbly.
In Jacobean times women were seen as inferior and even in the Victoria era, thus she required external forces to crush her conscience to allow her to fulfil her ambition. Yet she is afraid her feminine qualities will prevent her from achieving the murder of King Duncan. Which would gradually lead to her mental breakdown. Regicide was considered a mortal sin in Jacobean times, one God couldn't forgive. Whereas Browning’s protagonist in The Laboratory sustains her feminine qualities this is reflected in the line “The colours too grim” in which she is referring to her dislike of the colour of poison and that it needs to be 'brightened' up in order to convince her victim to drink it.
One of the main reasons feminism has lost supporters is that business have worked to over-power the image that represents feminists. Feminists are portrayed as bra burning, hairy-legged, man- hating, and lesbians. This image of a theory as caused women to back down from the fight, and that’s exactly what organizations against the theory want. Many women are against being feminist, they find the word unappealing. The stereotype attached to feminism isn't considered beautiful by our cultural standards and as a result, this stance becomes unappealing to women because the worst thing you can call a woman in our culture is ugly.
She chose to put this particular poem right in the centre of the collection because it is the most taboo poem and shows just how much men can influence women in relationships or even just for sex. A good example of this is ‘I went mad for the sex’ from ‘The Devils Wife’ shows she is with him for the sex and she’d do anything to keep getting it. The poems in the first half of the collection the women always escape from the betrayal of men take control. ‘Delilah’ and ‘Mrs Quasimodo’ are good examples of this as in ‘Delilah’ she cuts off his hair, ‘Then with deliberate, passionate hands, I cut every lock of his hair’ shows she took control of the situation and did it as a duty because his hair is what makes him strong, and without it he has nothing. Also ‘I fastened a chain to the door’ is ironic as she is trying to escape from being controlled by him yet she is ‘chaining’ herself inside the door so she cannot escape.
Curley’s wife essay Curley’s wife is a character of wide complex and diversity. Her role slowly unwinds and develops throughout the course of the novel, constantly changing the reader’s opinion of her due to her ambiguous characteristics. We see through the novel that in 1930’s America women were generally treated with contempt through the course of the novel and as a general theme. Steinbeck depicts females as ‘trouble makers’ who bring ruin on men; Curley’s wife who walks the ranch as a temptress, seems to be a prime example of this destructive tendency. Women were looked upon as inferior; and incapable of the skills men were, so a woman’s role was mainly housework and nothing with manual requirement.
By utilizing the Handmaids as a representation of the females in the Gileadean society, the author exposes the flaws of an anti-feminist society through objectification and the absence of agency. The Handmaid’s Tale illustrates women who are strongly objectified by men. An example of how Handmaids are objectified is through their names. The women are named after their assigned Commander; their name which consists of two parts is constructed with the prefix, ‘Of’, followed by the suffix of their Commander’s name. The main character’s Handmaid name is Offred, meaning that she is property of Fred.
Using a female character makes it more powerful to challenge the authorities and the norms. The wife likens to the priests who use the literature badly and wrongly to vindicate their acts. The wife’s misusing of literature shows that she is unschooled. The wife shows us herself to be in opposition with the patriarchal society she lives in. When she talks against society’s norms, she talks in a dialogical
The Aunts teach the Handmaids at the Red Centre about how women are now protected and respected. In reality, Gilead is turning women against women. The girls at the Red Centre are supposed to testify about their past lives, and when Janine confessed she was raped, the other Handmaids didn’t sympathise with her at all but were forced to condemn her that the rape was Janine’s fault because she led them on. And Offred admitted that “We meant it, which was the bad thing”. The condemnation might have started out because they were forced to but eventually the Handmaids enjoy comdemning each other.
Amal Kassir in 'This is For the Ladies' speaks about the perceived concept of feminism that is prevalent in the 21st century and expresses her disapproval of it. Feminism basically advocates equality of men and women.However,today the notion of feminism is perceived different.To be a feminist/empowered woman is to bare your skin,dress well,talk well,and most importantly,be flirty,according to Amal Kassir. Amal Kassir through her poem expresses her abject disapproval over how the idea of feminism is painted which according to her is only degrading the females. She further questions the patriarchal society that under the guise of supporting women empowerment is suppressing and oppressing the women and makes a stand stating thatshe is 'not drowning in any man's drool'. She belive that by succumbing to the 'idealised' image of a woman that in reality does not give women the liberty of having a mind of their own,the women are being disrespectful to themselves.