Analysis Of Augustine's Confessions

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When viewed under a feminist lens in Confessions, the most notable female character, Monica, risks losing her significance as a compassionate caregiver in Augustine’s life. In chapter three of Confessions, Augustine discusses Monica’s dream with the readers. After Monica tells Augustine of her dream of his perdition, Augustine recalls trying to twist Monica’s dream to ease her “downcast[ness]and daily floods of tears” (III.19). A modern feminist would have issues with Augustine’s description of Monica’s emotional energy, saying that she is entitled to her emotions, because she is his mother and deserves the utmost respect, regardless of her gender. Augustine’s indifferent attitude response to Monica when he “tried to twist [the dream’s] meaning” (III.20) shows his disrespect regarding females. Contemporary feminism points out that Monica’s tears represent her love and concern for her son’s wellbeing in life and after death, deserving immense amount of respect and love. Nevertheless, Augustine fails to do so, and weasels out of her with a sense of male supremacy. Yet, he confesses, “During this time this chaste, devout, and sober widow, one of the kind you love … in prayer and weeping, never ceased her hours of prayer to lament about me to you” (III.20). A modern feminist would be upset that Augustine does not offer Monica the respect she deserves as a mother and a woman. However, the pressure between Monica and Augustine’s relationship begins Augustine’s journey to God. It
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