Society thinks of someone’s identity as a stagnant object that is un-swayed by the environment around them. However, there are many factors that go into what someone’s identity is. The novel “The Return of Martin Guerre” by Natalie Zemon Davis, discusses how gender roles and identity can affect a person. Both topics, gender roles and personal identity, have individual issues as well as compound issues in today’s society. They exist on their own but additionally, they influence each other.
Through the novel The Chrysalids, author John Wyndham explores many examples of how identity and self-expression are vital to a thriving society and person. Wyndham shows readers how restraining identity and self-expression have a negative impact on not only the person, but in addition, those who surround them and the society in which they live. He does this through the emotional expression and the physical actions of the characters throughout the novel.
In A Room of One’s Own Virginia Woolf Uses a lot of ethos and logos and pathos in the beginning of the chapter to get the reader to connect with the piece then uses strong examples to back up what she 's saying to the reader I think her strongest quality in this piece is that she has really strong examples to back up what she 's discussing in this chapter. When she/s discussing the idea of loss of history at the bottom of page 44 “History scarcely mentions her” showing exactly how she 's discussing the loss of women 's history. Immediately after that, she shows her strong examples “I turned to professor Trevelyan again to see what history meant to him. I found by looking at his chapter headings that it meant-”
In John Knowles’s novel A Separate Peace Identity is shown as what defines us and makes us be placed in other peoples perspectives. An author can use identity to place characters in the readers mind to portray them a certain way, just as John Knowles did in A Separate peace. An identity can be defined as who a person is inside and out.
The identity a person holds is one of the most important aspects of their lives. Identity is what distinguishes people from others, although it leaves a negative stereotype upon people. In the short story Identities by W.D Valgardson, a middle-aged wealthy man finds himself lost in a rough neighborhood while attempting to look for something new. The author employs many elements in the story, some of the more important ones being stereotype and foreshadow. For many people, their personal identity is stereotyped by society.
Masculine and Feminine Roles in Steinbeck’s “Chrysanthemums” In the story “The Chrysanthemums”, by John Steinbeck, Elisa Allen lives an unsatisfactory life as she desires more than what is bestowed upon her. The reader learns Elisa’s husband is culpable for not seeing the beauty of his wife, leaving an open door for the antagonist, a traveler, to prey upon Elisa’s. Steinbeck uses Masculine and Feminine roles of the early 20th century, Internal Conflict, and an antagonist, to show Elisa’s struggle for Identity. Steinbeck illustrates Masculine and feminine roles of the 20th century in the “Chrysanthemums” to show Elisa’s struggle with identity.
Woolf suggests that having a room literally allows women to have their own space to write, but figuratively traps them in their own thoughts due to a lack of freedom. In the works of Jamaica Kincaid, Virginia Woolf, and Alice Walker, the female figures have shown how their own thoughts, reflection, and creativity could be used as a sense of freedom. In the short story, "Girl," by Jamaica Kincaid, the writer shows how an older adult misguided a girl. The adult in the story says," On Sundays try to walk like a lady and not like the slut you are so bent on becoming" (Kincaid 1340).
In Sylvia Plath’s autobiographical novel The Bell Jar, the readers learn of a young women adventures and everyday life in a male-dominated society. The book has been banned on many different occasions due to the contents of the book. The Bell Jar was suppressed for not only its profanity and sexuality but for its overt rejection of the woman’s role as wife and mother. It isn’t just the character Esther Greenwood that encounters a male-dominated society, Sylvia Plath did herself growing up. Feminism was a big impact on women's life during the nineteen fifties.
“Being rich is not about how much money you have or how many homes you own; it’s the freedom to buy any book you want without looking at the price and wondering if you can afford it” (John Waters, Role Models). In this quote, Waters associates wealth with the ability to readily acquire literature. While it is true that opulence grants individuals more opportunities and resources, Virginia Woolf provides a strict correlation between the two in her essay A Room of One’s Own and thus suggests it is impossible to be a successful woman without money. Adrienne Rich argues, “Virginia Woolf is addressing an audience of women, but she is acutely conscious—as she always was—of being overheard by men… She drew the language out into an exacerbated thread
Throughout literature the constant theme of identity has been explored, with Northrop Frye even suggesting “the story of the loss and regaining of identity is, I think, the framework for all literature.” For characters, true identity isn’t always apparent, it needs to be searched for. Sometimes the inner struggle for identity stems from ones need for belonging. Whether one finds their sense of identity within friends, family, or in a physical “home”. It’s not always a place that defines identity.
This novel is also autobiographical. Throughout history, women have been locked in a struggle to free themselves from the borderline that separates and differentiate themselves from men. In many circles, it is agreed that the battleground for this struggle and fight exists in literature. In a
Do you know that Shakespeare is not the only gifted writer in his family? This mysterious member exists in the English writer Virginia Woolf’s imagination. In her famous essay “Shakespeare’s Sister,” Woolf uses the hypothetical anecdote of Judith Shakespeare as her main evidence to argue against a dinner guest, who believes that women are incapable of writing great literature. During the time when Judith is created, women are considered to be naturally inferior to men and are expected to be passive and domestic. Regarding her potential audience, educated men, as “conservative,” Woolf attempts to persuade them that social discouragement is the real cause of the lack of great female writers without irritating them by proposing “radical” arguments.
Woolf describes the “Angel in the House”, “if there was a draught she sat in it... she never had a mind or a wish or her own.” (Woolf). Woolf demonstrates how the “Angel in the House” represents the stereotypes that society oppresses women with. The ideal woman was seen as someone who had to be selfless without any imagination of her own.
More recently, the awarded Canadian writer Margaret Atwood has also focused mainly on women’s issues and has been regarded as a feminist writer. In “The Handmaid’s Tale”, published in 1986 Margaret Atwood portrays a strongly feminist view of a dystopian society, in which women have been deprived of all their rights. Both of these writers are representatives of the female feminist writers who have let their footprint in our literary history, and each of them expressed her concerns on women’s rights according to the time they were living in. In A Room of One’s Own, Virginia Woolf (1929) emphasizes the inequity of treatment for women throughout times that still persists in her society, and promotes her thesis that "a woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction" (p. 6).
One of the most significant works of feminist literary criticism, Virginia Woolf’s “A Room of One`s Own”, explores both historical and contemporary literature written by women. Spending a day in the British Library, the narrator is disappointed that there are not enough books written by or even about women. Motivated by this lack of women’s literature and data about their lives, she decides to use her imagination and come up with her own characters and stories. After creating a tragic, but extraordinary gifted figure of Shakespeare’s sister and reflecting on the works of crucial 19th century women authors, the narrator moves on to the books by her contemporaries. So far, women were deprived of their own literary history, but now this heritage is starting to appear.