Beauty In Northanger Abbey And A Vindication Of The Rights Of Women

1053 Words5 Pages
During the romantic period, society judges women on their beauty, something that they have no control over. This idea of beauty was pushed on young girls and this made them feel as if beauty was the only thing that’s important, but the romantic period literature was going to change that. Beauty, shown as the single most important thing for women in Northanger Abbey and A Vindication of the Rights of Women, which is wrong because it’s degrading for women to be judged on something that they can’t control, this then affects how women are depicted in literature, changing the work’s tone to be satirical, making fun of this idea, or rebellious, in going away from these beauty standards. Instead of degrading women based on their beauty, women should instead get compliments on their beauty. But most women had no way to change these standards, the only thing they could do was make them into a joke, which is exactly what Austen did in Northanger Abbey. By Austen writing in a satirical tone, her points were able to get across in a way that wasn’t dangerous to her. Main character Catherine Morland of Northanger Abbey took on this role of being degraded because of her beauty, in order to illustrate how harsh society was. “At fifteen, [Catherine’s] appearances were mending” (Austen 3), this quote is just one example of how beauty standards were pushed into young girls heads. Even at such young ages, girls had these same extreme beauty standards as their mothers were, believing that they
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