As Helen Cixous suggests, Gilman “breaks up truth with laughter.” (11) Although it was written hundred years ago yet it has so much relevance in the contemporary world. By strongly criticizing the culture and tradition of outside world, Gilman has brought this imaginary world with a feminist perspective. She has presented in her novel that, gender difference, suppression and oppression of women, sexual harassment, rape, will continue throughout the years. Gilman’s works are strongly embedded and connected with women like Women and Economics, Concerning Children, The home: Its work and Influence and many more. Herland depicts the breakdown of isolated society and expresses the changed ideas and the conflict between the outside world and their world.
Holiday-Karre expresses that “Writers like Kenneth Yellis and Lewis Ernberg discuss “new women” as threatening to traditional morality and as rebelling against older sexual mores.” (2016, p. 323). She goes on to express how their writings are in part negative towards these actions as less than political. These actions against old moral standings was very much political, and a big part of the feminist movement of that
This thesis will be dealing with the life and work of two most prominent women writers of the 19th and 20th century, Emily Dickinson and Sylvia Plath. For better understanding of complex topics their work reflects, I will describe important events from their biographies. Although Dickinson and Plath lived in two different centuries they were connected by a common thread, the position of women in the male-dominated world. Not only that they wanted for women to have the same rights as men, but also to be free from the roles of housewives and mothers which were imposed on them by a conservative society. They fought for these rights in only way they could, by writing.
In her essay Adeline Mowbray: Diverting the Libertine Gaze Roxanne Eberle also confirms that the novel is inspired on Wollstonecraft and Godwin’s relationship, but she goes a little further and suggests that more than a replica of the two “Jacobin” philosophers ‘lives the novel is a counteraction to Godwin’s Memoirs of the Author of A Vindication of the Rights of Woman. As an early admirer of Mary Wollstonecraft Opie could not accept the abhorrent position in which the Memoirs had placed her, so she wrote a novel that “examines the confusion which ensues when a women’s philosophical beliefs conflict with society’s notion about female sexuality”(1994: 123), and how that transgressive women is converted into a sexual object by a conservative society. For Patricia Mathew, more than a critique to Godwin’s concepts, the novel exhibits the impracticalities of those theories when applied to women in the late eighteenth century. Her analysis unfolds around the idea that Adeline Mowbray “takes its central theme from Wollstonecraft’s experiment in marriage with Godwin”(2007: 390) and arguments that Opie sets the basis for her fiction by using Wollstonecraft’s
Men should have absolute rule over society. This was the mindset back when women's rights activists were considered rare and unorthodox. In A Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions, Elizabeth Cady Stanton rejects the status quo and finds solutions to the overbearing problems she sees within society. A concept that has greatly been dreamt over throughout history has been challenged, by a woman. Elizabeth Cady Stanton exerts repetition, allusion, and pathos to express her opinions in favor of increasing women's rights.
Rebecca West once said, “I myself have never been able to find out precisely what feminism is: I only know that people call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat”; feminism and other social issues are fundamental to literature, with them commonly being a driving force behind both modern and classic works of fiction. Feminism is everywhere, with women still fighting for gender equality in modern day Britain as demonstrated through Emma Watson’s United Nations speech which was broadcasted in September of 2014 where she differentiates feminism from ‘man-hating’. Feminism has developed considerably over time as general attitudes have been swayed through literature, political movements and women’s portrayal of themselves. In 1847, Charlotte Bronte released her novel ‘Jane Eyre’ which was viewed as very radical for its time as Bronte uses Jane to exhibit her resentment towards society. Jane is presented as a morally strong, determined character who, when she falls in love, embraces the notion instead of the label and profits which are associated with it; she states that she “cares for [her]self” and that “more unsustained [she is], the more [she] will respect [her]self” as she is not tempted away from her self-respect.
The relationships between gender and power in A Doll’s House and Lysistrata ‘One is not born, but, rather becomes a woman’. Lysistrata and A Doll’s House both present the disadvantaged position of women in their respective societies. The two plays present the relationship between gender and power and follow two women who go to extremes to become liberated from the restraints of their oppressive and dominating patriarchal society. Therefore, it is clear that both Nora and Lysistrata demonstrate the potential for women 's power and resistance in situations of male dominance in a hegemonic patriarchy. In order to prove this, it is important to look at the relationship between man and power, woman and power and the ways in which Nora and Lysistrata embody this power in the two plays.
Women’s rights is a subject that revolved around society all throughout history, and it was not uncommon to see female writers criticizing this imbalance of social power in their literature. Mellor’s “Possessing Nature: The Female in Frankenstein” illuminates several aspects of the plot in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein that include underlying messages about the struggle for women’s rights and gender equality within this seemingly anti-feminist novel. In the very beginning of her article, Mellor brings light upon Victor Frankenstein’s perspective towards nature as a female. Additionally, Mellor argues that Victor’s experiment is a violation of nature, as he forcibly takes away the ability to create life from Mother Nature. Furthermore, Mellor
Alejandra Metcalf Mrs. Cottom ENGL1010 03 November, 2017 The Haunting Feminist Theory By dictionary definition, feminism is the advocacy of women 's rights based on the equality of the sexes. Throughout the years, society has had three ¨phases¨ of feminism, and the definition of feminism has changed through those phases. Currently, feminism is a debateable word on whether the term is good or bad. Despite the controversy and debate over feminism, the theory of feminism in literature cannot be ignored, even by the most misogynistic of people. Charlotte Perkins Gilman 's ¨The Yellow Wallpaper¨, Roddy Dowell´s ¨The Pram¨, and Kate Chopin 's ¨The Story of an Hour,¨ can all be viewed with the application of the feminist theory.
The reader becomes very aware of the situation Nora is faced with as Ibsen challenges us to think about the societal times women were a part of during the late 1800’s. As Unni Langas states in her article describing gender within the play, “..this drama is not so much about Nora’s struggle to find herself as a human being, as it is about her shocking experience of being treated as a woman..” (Langas, 2005). This gives the reader an insight into Nora Helmer’s character. She is evidently perceived as the Doll trapped in the Doll house, as she is viewed as an entertainer rather than her own person in the eyes of her husband and children. The representation of the doll is symbolically significant as Nora is compared to a beautiful feminine figure, being the doll, but also someone who is treated as a toy and as someone who is disrespected.