Betty Friedan's The Feminine Mystique

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Introduction: Feminism Creative writing has had a vital role to play in constructing a positive image of women in literature. It is the only uncorrupted area that provides a woman full scope to re-assert, re-discover the meaning of self and establish her identity. It also provides her enough space to accommodate changes, conflicts and converge them in her imaginative world that later gets translated into practice. This internal battle is something that we see in almost all the female characters in the select novels such as Ladies Coupe and Mistress by Anita Nair; Jasmine and Desirable Daughters by Bharathi Mukherjee; Interpreter of Maladies; A Temporary Matter and The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri and That Long Silence and Roots and Shadows…show more content…
The book reveals the private angst which many middle class women were experiencing in the 1950’s as unwaged housewives and consumers. ‘Mystique’ was Friedan’s term for the ‘problem with no name’ – the psychic distress experienced by women who had no public careers and were immured in domestic concerns. The book is based in part on a survey of Smith College graduates. The book led to the birth of America’s largest Organization- NOW (National Women’s Organization) in 1966. Betty Friedan – a Liberal Feminist believed in the theory of liberal freedom for women. Liberal feminism is one of the main streams of feminist political and social theory and has the most long term history. Feminism stands for a belief in sexual equality combined with a commitment to eradicate sexist domination and to transform…show more content…
Women were bound in the least paid jobs, working long hours, and bearing full responsibility for the home by fetching fuel and water; by doing work in family production units, without being paid for the labor; by bringing up children and caring (for) the sick and the aged. There was growing violence against women – rape, wife battering, family violence, dowry deaths and prostitution. This was the stark reality for millions of women. (1987:5) Hence, Indian feminism is in a sense formed out of the experiences and conflicts of middle-class women who are active participants in their representation, but of course, within a context constituted and given to them by the institutions and knowledge structures governing their everyday lives. Susie Tharu and K. Lalitha have attempted to give a historical account of women’s writing in India from 600 B.C. In tracing this tradition they argue that feminine drew attention in spectacular ways to the subtle strategies of power written with shaping and the differentiation of the feminine in the everyday practice of family or education, work place, law, medicine and psychology. Many creative writers in India have dealt with the conflict between tradition and modernity, bondage and

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