Frederick Douglass’ Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An American Slave, Written by Himself and Harriet Jacobs’ Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl discusses how slavery dehumanizes and breaks down an individual to no worth. Douglass’ and Jacobs’ accounts are similar because they lecture against slavery with the work and obstacles they went through. Jacobs says, “For years, my master had done his utmost to pollute my mind with foul images, and to destroy the pure principles inculcated by my grandmother, and the good mistress of my childhood. The influences of slavery had the same effect on me that they had on other young girls; they had made me prematurely knowing, concerning the evil ways of the world.” (827) Jacobs explains that slavery has attempted to take a toll on her life with its physical, emotional, and mental abuse. Women in slavery were mistreated sexually as well, and in this case, Jacobs faced sexual oppression at a young age.
Sethe, the protagonist suffers the most inhumane treatment at the plantation by the white masters. The literature produced after the Civil War concentrate on the lives of African Americans during and after slavery. Beloved deals exclusively with the distorted love of a mother for her child under the oppression of slavery. Due to the horror of slavery Sethe 's murder of Beloved is renovated into what Morrison controversially considers 'the ultimate gesture of a
"Ah can’t die easy thinkin’ maybe de menfolks white or black is makin’ a spit cup outa you: Have some sympathy fuh me. Put me down easy, Janie, Ah’m a cracked plate." Nanny is beyond exhausted. She grew up during slavery, was raped and had to raise her child, Leafy, without a father. Nanny never got married because she was worried that Leafy would be trampled upon like she was.
Motherhood is the most basic human right, and slaves are being stripped of their ability to have families. No white woman in America would ever ‘wish that she and they [her children] might die before the day dawns,’ so Jacobs includes this notion to appeal to the maternal instincts of the women reading her narrative. It creates a sorrowful tone that veils underlying anger at the unjust nature of this New Year’s practice. Furthermore, she creates more sympathy for the situation of slave mothers by reminding her white audience that slave children are ‘torn’ from their mothers at a young age. The word invokes a different emotional response from her audience; it invokes a feeling of longing for their children and sympathy for the mothers.
Through the deviation from the assumed expectations of mothering, Sethe pursues an identity that will enable her to reaffirm her ownership over her children. The voiceless position of the black woman, traditionally unrepresented because of her gender, class and ethnicity, finds a way to speak through murder. Her subjectivity cannot be represented through words, as Hélène Cixous suggests in The Laugh of Medusa, because language is the owner’s instrument. Therefore, she can only enter the world of discourse by performing a violent act, which undermines the basis of a slave system whose weakest part is Sethe herself. In a desperate attempt to hurt those who hurt her more, the woman affirms her desire to put her children ‘where they could be safe’ and save them from white men’s exploitation.
From the get-go, Sweet Home is not really “sweet,” rather, it was a dreadful and abominable place whereby the inhabitants were repeadetly striped of their identities along with being physically abused. The slaves of this plantation were often the victim of frequent measuring and experiments by their masters. The memories and experiences Sethe have accumulated throughout the years at Sweet Home have transformed her to become one that is afraid--afraid that the ones she loved the most, her precious children, will in turn, be a victim of slavery. While running away from her master, she ends up in
It is the mother’s vulnerability to the racial standards of beauty that is transmitted to the daughter and ultimately leads to her victimization. In fact, the reason of Pauline’s vulnerability to the racially prejudiced notions of beauty lies in her relationship with her own mother. The relationship between Pecola Breedlove, the protagonist, and her mother, Pauline Breedlove, is ironically characterized by lack of love, and emotional attachment, indifference, frustration and cruelty. Set in a small town in Ohio, during the Depression, The Bluest Eye is the story of eleven year old Pecola Breedlove, who, victimized by the racist society, yearns for blue eyes, which, she believes, will make her worthy of love, happiness and acceptance in the
A Woman Lost in a Patriarchal Society Feminism and gender differences contribute a major role in the works of authors from the 18th and 19th century. During that point in history, women were essentially treated as second-class citizens without the ability to do anything less they faced judgment and ostracization from members of society. Women were not allowed to vote, own property nor be accepted into prominent leading positions. Instead, many were required to stay in the home and care for the family which mainly included the well being of their husband. Women lacked the freedom and independence they not only wanted but needed due to a society run patriarchal views that hindered the growth of women.
Antigone manipulates the government by using her lifestyle conditions, her bravery and her determination of what she believe in. In these three plays that it be will analized as a perspective of Antigone, “Oedipus the King”, “Antigone” and “La pasion segun Antigona Perez”, Antigone is a underestimated character. The main characters see Antigone as a simple woman. Commencing with, woman in that time should be not heard. Woman should be at home, raising their children, could not be brave or refute what men said and they have to be happy with their life of slavery and comfort.
Thus Gender Bias seems to be deeply rooted in the family in which the parents are the root cause for this nature of discrimination. Education is denied to girls; particularly in rural areas of the country as the parents believe they are only fit to do household activities. They are not supposed to be outside the four walls of the home. Women‟s suppression in the patriarchal society is clearly portrayed in Desai‟s novel Village By the Sea. The character Lila had to leave her schooling and stay at home to look after her two sisters.