They fought for these rights in only way they could, by writing. In order to show the manner in which Dickinson’s and Plath's poems portray gender relations and, more specifically, how they granted women a strong voice, I will analyze several poems and a novel. Historical background of that time will allow us an insight of the important processes in which many women were engaged. These processes refer to the First and Second Wave of Feminism. Although Dickinson and Plath were not active members of these movements, they are considered to be one of the cornerstones of modern and more equal world.
She created a society in which women wanted to live in. Women had found this new society appealing so they had begun to endorse women’s activism and fought against their suffrages by taking on jobs that men typically held, gaining an education, and taking a stand to end female
The end of the nineteenth century was marked by a wave of women 's’ rights and feminist movements as women grew tired of their subordination and sought change. They were successful in their efforts. Author Kate Chopin received critical acclaim, and opposition, with her feminist literature in the time. Her famous novel, The Awakening, shocked the world. She portrays women “waking up” from their roles as wives and seeking freedom.
Throughout history, women have had to fight against stigma and stereotypes in society. In every era, from the ancient world to present day, females have been persecuted and taken advantage of due to their gender. In our previous set of readings, the female protagonists were strong characters who defied weak stereotypes, but were still viewed as lesser beings than men. In our second group of readings, where were written more recently, women saw a slight increase in their sovereignty. All depict women as powerful figures who use their wits to make a better life for themselves.
Critical Lens Essay #2 In the 19th century women begun to rise up against gender roles and social expectations that have had oppressed women throughout history, women yearned to be just as equal as men. Authors like Charlotte Perkins Gilman, a feminist author during the 19th century, would create characters and stories that would get her message across as shown in one of Gilman’s most famous stories “The Yellow Wallpaper” which touches upon a woman’s mental and physical health as well as the main character’s oppression which holded her back for a long time. The main character from “The Yellow Wallpaper” expresses throughout the story how she wishes to break free from all that is holding her back and live the life she has always wanted. “How wrong it it for a woman to expect the man to create a world she wants, rather than create it herself” (Anaϊs Nin)
After skimming through Volume 1 of The Norton Anthology Literature by Women, I noticed the reoccurring themes of patriarchy, women subordination, and the strength to be creative despite oppression. During the times that these literary pieces were written, women were constantly battling the patriarchy in order to get basic rights. During the earlier time periods, intelligence was seen as a sign of an evil spirit in a woman, resulting in miniscule amounts of literary works written by women. Women were not provided with equal spaces to creatively express themselves, as mentioned by Virginia Woolf. Moreover, they were not given the same publishing opportunities, many women either went anonymous or by a fake male name to have their works published.
Gender Separation in “Jury of Her Peers” Susan Glaspell was a woman author that developed a different genre of writing for women in her time period. She was a feminist that broke the silence that women had in the early 1900s, giving an insight into how women thought and were treated. Glaspell wasn’t what was thought to be the typical woman of her time, and she tested the idea of how a woman must act through her writings and achievements. “Her plays, stories, and novels explore universal themes that continue to be vital and challenging to readers and scholars today: themes of American identity, individuality vs. social conformity, the idealism of youth, the compromises of marriage, the disillusionments and hopes of aging” (“About Susan Glaspell.”).
Gender inequality is an issue that has plagued women for centuries. Even in modern times, women must continually battle for rights that they so naturally deserve. Through the years writers have come along and eloquently expressed, through literature, their thoughts and opinions on such social issues as gender inequality. These authors have shared stories and experiences through their works which have made it possible to help others to understand such societal problems. Zora Neal Hurston does this beautifully with her short story “Sweat”.
Throughout literature and other works of art, women have been compartmentalized to fit into specific character types. Many of the archetypes put in place for women have been confining mainly due the roles and opportunities set in place for women at the time of the work. In the stories of Macbeth by William Shakespeare and Medea by Euripides, the female protagonist breaks the common mold for women during their respective time periods. Both works leave the audience to question precisely what the authors were trying to convey. In both Macbeth and Medea, the female protagonists, Lady Macbeth and Medea respectively, were portrayed as power, strong, and for the most part independent women.
From the publication of East of Eden to today the rights and empowerment of women have escalated exponentially. Women are no longer obligated to follow the nurturing mother ideal; they can be independent and strong. Then, in the novel, East of Eden, some believe the author oversimplifies his female characters by filing them into either traditional, caring mothers or heinous villains. However, Steinbeck utilizes their simple, one-dimensional archetypes to show how complex his female roles truly are through subtle details. Within the novel, most female characters are designated into the class of typical, loving mother types, but they are each defined separately within their cohort.