A Law More Nice Than Just Sarah Willis Parton Analysis

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Sarah Willis Parton or better known as “Fanny Fern” in her columns in the New York Ledger was one of the highest paid columnist in her time. Parton’s writing style was quite controversial for women at the time and she experienced many criticisms from people around her, including many of her family members. Going against the social and gender norms of her time, Parton was able to use her column as an outlet to express her feelings towards the world around her. In her article A Law More Nice Than Just, Parton uses the characterization of both Mr. and Mrs. Fern to speak out about the men and women in 19th century society. By reaching into the events of her past and the hardships she endured, she was able to pave the way for feminists of her time…show more content…
Fern or herself. She is painted as a very restless and willful woman who is appalled by the laws that were set for her by men. Her confusion is seen in the beginning of the article when she reads about Emma Wilson, a member of her town being arrested for wearing men’s clothing, “Now, why this should be an actionable offense is past my finding out, or where’s the harm in it, I am as much at a loss to see” (Parton 1750). The reader is able to see how uncomfortable she is with the fact that this happened to Wilson and that she does not stand for the oppression of herself or the women around her. It is seen very early on that Mrs. Fern is a very non-conservative member of her community and that she yearns to make a change. Mrs. Fern is unlike most of the women that surround her who sit “there with their noses flattened against the window-pane” (1750) and wait for a husband or a potential husband. Parton also expresses Mrs. Fern’s headstrong nature in her interactions with Mr. Fern. When her husband refuses to believe that she would have the audacity to wear men’s clothing she simply ignores his uncertainty and gathers the clothes. These moments of Mrs. Fern’s tenacious nature are seen throughout the piece and helps the reader grasp not only Parton’s attitude towards her surroundings, but the attitude that she seems to want the women around her to
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