Raising a family, following religion and looking after the home, were at the fore front of women based ideology. Rigid Victorian society deemed it imperative that women were virgins when married and gave little leeway, if none at all to those who were not, as Angels mother asked ‘And that she is pure and virtuous goes without question?’ . Laila and Mariam face the crushing rules of the Taliban in Afghanistan, which held many of the same views as Victorian society, but on a far more extreme level. Zoe Brigley, as a feminist, uses her poetry to show modern day objectification of women, and shows that despite great developments in the rights of women and attitudes towards them since novels like Tess of the D’Ubervilles, that women are still not completely equal in society, and the way in which women are still outsiders and victims but in different ways. By objectifying Tess, Hardy is able to express his opinions about the treatment of women in Victorian society.
In presenting her heroine's path to poetic and personal maturity, Ms. Browning not only explored the Victorian relation between gender and genre, but she also created a female literary tradition that alluded to her predecessors. Her work draws upon novels written by women, such as Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre (1847), where the female protagonist's status as an orphan with a cruel aunt, proposal by St. John River, and Rochester's blindness appearing in both pieces. Another contribution to female tradition is the use of gynocentric, rather than andocentric, imagery. Barrett Browning's poem substitutes female, rather than male, types from the Old Testament, and even when describing men, uses female mythical figures for her analogies. These images and comparisons, that are driven by the poem's most serious concerns, represent an important imaginative achievement in themselves for the time.
However, not everyone agrees with the heavy stereotypes laid down by the social order such as male dominance and proper courting. Marie de France is one of these people. She depicts her views of gender expectations through literature. Within the poem Guigemar, Guigemar and his lady fulfill and contradict what would be considered as gender norms within society: female inferiority, traditional courtship, and male dominance. Marie de France does this to criticize and combat the societal expectations and inherent inequalities in Norman England.
Also it would have been seen as being deeply unnatural because women were seen to be of a much lower status than any man. Monstrosity is also shown through Lady Macbeth when she comes across as being deceitful. For example, she says “Look like innocent flower but be the serpent unerd’t”. This biblical reference portrays Lady Macbeth to be immoral as the blasphemous remark can be seen as her devaluing religious beliefs. The monstrous language Lady Macbeth voices is demonstrated through her use of euphemisms and puns.
The wings are symbolic of women in the C19th and in particular the Victorian era. The manner in which this image is composed suggests ideas in relation to values and attitudes pertaining to individuals in their social context. They include the longing and desire under the facade of morality present amongst this society, the possessive and incarcerating temperament of patriarchal figures over their female counterparts. These concepts are conveyed through the allegorical poetry of Robert Browning, particularly the aubade ‘Meeting at Night Parting at Morning (‘Meeting’)’ about an illicit rendezvous and the dramatic monologue ‘My Last Duchess (‘Duchess’)’ where Browning’s renaissance influence is evident through the poem acting as a revelation of the Duke Alfonso’s sinister actions and the objectification of women. Further, the 1996 film The Portrait of a lady (Portrait) about a woman’s desperate choice between her autonomous, love-driven spirit and the demands of social convention encapsulates these paradigms and the struggle of women in expressing themselves.
“For centuries, many Christian had placed the entire burden of original sin on women and attributed their inferiority to this transgression.” Women was accused for centuries for leading Adam to eat the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden in the creation stories of the Christian Bible. These acquisitions are what men used for years to exert their superiority over men. Grimke and Zagarri argue that there is no proof in the scriptures that “women is to be dependent on man!” In Sarah’s letters she goes as far to say, “Permit us to stand upright on that ground which God designed us to occupy. If he has not given us the rights which have, as I conceive, been wrested from us, we shall soon give evidence of our inferiority.” Grimke says this because she wants men to give women the chance to be equal, before they say that females are inferior. Zagarri supports Grimke’s claim that the Lord only can characterize what man’s duties are.
Jesse Smith Close Reading Anna Barbauld’s poem, “The Rights of Woman,” has a controversial debate, describing how women should take over and rule the world. Baurbauld was a poet, a freethinker but she wasn’t considered a feminist. In the poem, Barbauld acknowledges, “But hope not, courted idol of mankind, on this proud eminence secure to stay”(25). Meaning she’s advising women to stand up and play a higher role than men. But in reality she is scared to voice her true goal of the passage.
Gwen Harwood chooses to represent social institutions in a negative light because often in Gwen Harwood’s poems, women are portrayed as victims of the social circumstances of the 1950s and in the past as well. But Harwood sometimes chooses to take a different view and instead has the women either fight against the male dominant character, choosing to be more than just the mans possession or be an independent women who has ambitions and determination to be successful and not necessarily just be a mother. By placing the man as the dominant sex that provides for the family, and the women as the housewives and mothers, she gives the reader a view of how people were in the 1950s, and then adds a twist of the women dismissing this accepted behavior to express her opinion of such issues. Gwen Harwood’s work frequently focuses on woman being demoralised by society’s practices that reduce her to a lesser being. A common worldwide value that Harwood rejects as the normality in life with her poems.
Guadalupe Ramirez Professor Colette Morrow English 442 11 May 2105 The Condemnation of Widows in Elizabethan England and in Hamlet “He that woos a maid, must fain lie and flatter. But he that woos a widow, must down with his breeches and at her.” (Foyster) Hamlet explores a very interesting and complex topic in regard to women and marriage: the widow. The Elizabethan age was somewhat unique in regard to the woman. While it still held true that women often had little choice in their spouse, the Protestant Reformation afforded women a soul and therefore moral agency. As a result, women were allowed more freedom in the Elizabethan age than in previous eras.
Mary Shelley's Frankenstein The Basic Role of Family Mary Shelley's Frankenstein The Basic Role of Family A reckless, opinionated, driven feminist, who changed the face of literature, such is the perception of Mary Shelley. Truth be told, the general population would be correct in their assumptions. However, if they were to delve deeper into the psyche of Mary Shelley, they would be astounded to see the true harsh reality of Mary's existence. The Romantic era which took place between 1770 and 1848 promoted a profound shift in sensibility and a life rooted in the emotions and sentiments. Mary Shelley, rebellious by nature, produced a literary work of art which through gruesome descriptions, bleak dark imagery, and a scary, depressing