Rosaleen Gender Roles

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figures of wolf-men or tiger-men. As we have seen, animals represent human beings' sexual urges. Therefore, it seems equality is reached between men and women as far as sexuality is concerned. A concept further reinforced by Rosaleen’s mother, who seems to be the voice of reason against the archaic view of sexuality as evil, embodied by Granny. “If there is a beast in men, says Rosaleen’s mother, it meets its match in women too.” Lastly, female power appears as subversive, as challenging conventional gender roles themselves. For example, a symbol of patriarchal oppression like a mirror can be taken and transformed to mean something else for the female protagonist. A mirror can be a symbol of the male gaze, because a woman is always under society's…show more content…
The film, especially, seems to “betray” the book in that sense. Female power seems more real in Carter's collection, because it is displayed in the stories themselves. But in the film, it turns out the main part of the narrative was the protagonist's dream. Does it mean that changing existing gender roles is merely an unattainable fantasy? As Carole Zucker writes, the movement of the film goes upward to reach liberation from society's normative gender roles, and then falls at the end with Rosaleen waking up in terror (ref of article). The last image of the wolves bursting into the girl's room while she screams is reinforced by the words of a nursery rhyme warning little girls against the dangers of trusting strange men. Therefore, the viewers are left to wonder if the film “endorse[s] Granny's vision of the terror of sexuality”. (ref?) In Carter's collection as in the film, one also has to wonder whether female agency must always remain within the bounds of patriarchal power. Indeed, it seems that in the end (except in “The Bloody Chamber”), the female protagonist always has to stay with the man who preyed on her: Beauty with the Beast, or Little Red Riding Hood with the
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