Gender Themes In Boys And Girls By Alice Munro

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Growing up on a farm teaches many life lessons that continue on throughout life. The roles, duties, and expectations guide everyday life and allow for a work ethic later on in life. However, sometimes it is best to challenge reality and the expectations a person has to endure because of their gender. In Alice Munro’s story “ Boys and Girls”, the main character has to learn about the harshness of the world not from the death of farm animals but the expectations of her gender and the roles she will have to partake later in life even though she does not want to. Her family and the Setting are the primary factors in this because they are what allow her to discover the message while challenging her from achieving her own beliefs. The theme of…show more content…
Gender is important in the story because the men take on more masculine traditional roles while the women are expected to be more feminine and do things more around the house. The reason why the main character has to outside chores with her father is because her little brother is not old enough. Her mother and grandmother pick up on her tomboyish nature and try to instruct her to change her ways and act her gender. The main character has to deal with her gender issues and the sexism she lives with “ The word girl had formerly seemed to me innocent and unburdened, like the word child; now it appeared that it was no such thing. A girl was not, as I had supposed, simply what I was; it was what I had to become. It was a definition, always touched with emphasis, with reproach and disappointment. Also it was a joke on me(142)”. The main character does not take into account how her mother might want someone to bond with until she is older. Because of her immaturity she has a bad relationship with her parents and her brother even though her thoughts are justifiable. The story is split between the parents versus the children on the relationship they all have and how they contribute to each other’s character. The main character is a strong and passionate little girl who is not affected by seeing the deaths of farm animals which are given humane names but cries out her because of her inability to do the things she wants because of the expectations of her gender. Her father and mother are traditional in their outlooks and in their portrayal of farmhouse life. The family represents typically working class american family that is built on their faith, work ethic, place in the world. They have possibly conservative closed minded views that may cause them to believe the things they do about gender
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