Ragtime Gender Roles

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The novel Ragtime written by E.L. Doctorow sheds light of the injustices that are present in modern society. One injustice is gender, where men are dominant and women were seen as sexual objects and sex was the only power they had. Women were used for sex because it was something men had the right to do even if the women did not like it. Mother, Emma Goldman, and Evelyn Nesbit were victims of gender roles because women were used for the purpose of attention rather than having power. As the book unfolds these three women were victimized for being women where they tried to make changes in their roles as women. As a result these women were held accountable to use their gender as their only power to break the assumptions of how society proclaimed them as. Mother’s relationship with Father as being distant demonstrates gender in her time. Across America sex and death were similar in characteristics and mother found it to be true. The unexpected visit of Houdini had “interrupted Mother and Father coitus” and there was no sign of it being…show more content…
Emma was for “radical dissection of society” where she questioned the power that women could have. She was able to provide “spiritual awareness of marriages” where women became awake of their roles of becoming powerful wives. She goes on to question the service of women where they “may not vote, love whom they want or commit their lives to the spiritual adventure of life”. Women were identified based on their sexual attraction and their genius being “only in their wombs” Goldman’s response to gender of her time was done by comparing the acts of slavery relatively to women. Women were seen as an object used for sex and not given the right to either vote or to make powerful changes in society. Her call for action for women was not well appreciated so simply talking about it gave her the negativity by others and the violence by the
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