Throughout History, women have long struggled and fought for the same equality, justice, and rights as males in society. Historians have two opposing views of what life was like in Puritan society. One side argues that Puritan society was a golden age for women as they worked alongside their husbands, had an important role in the household. However, opposing historians argue that Puritan women were inferior to men in the society for five main reasons. Women were inferior because they were supposed to be silent company, they only received half the inheritance of their brothers, they were meant to have and take care of the children, they received harsher punishment for their wrongs, and they had to follow strict rules.
Although Jaimito seems sweet and the perfect fit for Dede, he is quickly criticized. His marriage with Dede becomes bitter, argumentative and abusive. In one instance, he “grabbed her by the wrists and shoved her on the bed,”(176). As well as abusing his wife, he controls her and doesn’t allow her to be too involved in the revolution like her sisters and their husbands are. Throughout the book, Jaimito is controlling his wife's actions and constantly questioning her, which doesn’t cause him to seem like a great husband or even a kindhearted person.
The documentary inspects the women 's battle to secure their status in their family through dealing with a patriarchal mentality, the women also attempt to exert their power, and through it all, we become familiar to Dadi, the manager of the family. Having a daughter brings sadness through some families as they know the struggle their daughters ought to face. Compared to males, their life is much harder as the experience of being a female is more a burden than anything else. There is no day off being a woman in a household, either being a sister, daughter, daughter in law or mother in law there is always a task assigned to you. In Dadi’s family, Dadi supports this claim as she describes being a woman as being an inferior caste.
Sanger was a feminist who believed women would never be equal to men until women were able to decide when they would become a mother. Because of her feminist views, she put a lot of blame on men in her essay for unwanted and failing pregnancies, arguing that women are enslaved by men's desires because the women are left on their own once they are pregnant and have a child. With pregnancy, Sanger argues that the women suffer more greatly than the men. Sanger says that, “In an ideal society, no doubt, birth control would become the concern of the man as well as the woman.” Throughout her entire essay she constantly portrays women as the victims, because their feminine spirits are “bondaged” by men’s desires. Her arguments are based more on her opinion, than absolute facts.
Furthermore, Feminist Criticism provides a better view of literature because it shows that women can be powerful. When Emilia finds out that her husband has been plotting an evil plan she says,” Tis proper I obey him, but not now”(Othello V.2.195). Emilia refuses to help her husband after she finds the cruel intentions he has despite the expectation of women always being submissive to their husbands. Women also have a voice and feelings, they are capable of defying their husbands commands when they know what he expects is simply wrong. In a literary article,The Role of Women in Othello: A Feminist Reading states that,” Society weighs heavily on the shoulders of women; they feel that they must support the men and defer to them, even if the actions of the men are questionable” (Literary Articles).
Society tests this notion through its treatment of women. It treats women poorly to cause them to comply with gender expectations. Not only do women have to face pressures of conformity in real life, but they also face intimidation in fairytales. Grimm’s Snow White and Cinderella perpetuate society’s notion that a woman is the inferior being whose value lies not only in her beauty but also in her abilities to perform domestic work and satisfy men. Grimm uses the characters of Cinderella and Snow White to perpetuate the idea that women should lead quietly domestic lives.
In contrast to past gender stereotypes, they argue that girls should be strong, independent, and intelligent. Orenstein takes a second wave feminism approach, meaning females are just as capable as males. She references how she commonly writes about feminism and warning parents of a “preoccupation of body and beauty” in order to pull for a change in society (327). The beauty standards give women an impossible set of goals deterring their confidence. In addition to unrealistic standards, Orenstein is alarmed by the growing popularity of princesses because she views them as “retrograde role models” (329).
In Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God, she uses her characters to challenge the gender roles of that time. In her book, women are the submissive and weaker gender. They cannot gain power without a influential or wealthy man backing her up which is usually connected by marriage. Considering since women have no powers in society, in marriages they also don’t have much power, therefore the husband suppresses their wives and doesn’t give them any freedom. Because the females are scared of the males, they don't fight back and just keep it in.
In Phyllis Schlafly's The Power of the Positive Woman, he mentions where women seem to stand in society, adding on a comparison between men and female. In a male dominated society, women are constantly trying to prove themselves. One of the biggest differences Schlafly points out is the fact that women can have babies whereas men cannot. However when it comes to physical differences there are many including, men having more water in their body, and less fatty tissue.“Falwell”, in Major Problems depicts the image of the American family and how it is a fundamental block of our society. However, divorce is threatening the American family.
In its society, there is the assumption that the male gender is superior, therefore holds more influence over others and gather more power. It is also assumed that females have slight power over men to manipulate them into doing things or believing things by using their femininity and innocence. These powers are displayed quite evidently in The Crucible which is set in a patriarchal society. In The Crucible, women were nothing without a husband or a father, no rights to own property, no rights to have a job and make a living, no rights. Yet when Abigail Williams convinced her friends to lie and falsely accuse others of being witches, the male judges had no qualms about believing them.