Her first and most prominent work, The Book of the City of Ladies, tackles the issues of misogyny and sexism head-on by acknowledging women’s contribution in history, providing an alternative to the dominant narrative (which was largely written by males). In The Book of the City of Ladies, three allegorical figures—Lady Reason, Rectitude, and Justice—appear before Christine, where they discuss the oppression of women and the misogynistic subject matter used by contemporary male writers. Under the guidance of the Ladies, Christine then goes on to construct the City of Ladies, a place of refuge for all good and noble women, impenetrable by the malicious attacks of sexist male writers. Through the celebration of women and their achievements throughout history, de Pizan was able to counter the negative stereotypes associated with the female sex since antiquity. Ultimately, de Pizan argued that women, like men, are capable of adopting virtuous behaviour and following intellectual pursuits.
She feels that they are full of a kind of potential to be honest and good human beings, however a majority of them seem to belittle women and not show any great character. But men, in her opinion, can also be sensitive and poetic, as she portrays Anne’s love interest Captain Wentworth. Jane Austen’s social mirror reflects her very broken, unfair, Victorian society in an accurate and entertaining way. Her literary catalog is filled with commentary and wit regarding gender inequality, and she did not hesitate to inject her works with her own personal beliefs and thoughts. Austen was a brave individual for putting such hefty arguments into her works, and was a unique author in the ways she could encapsulate her society in such a realistic manner.
“Who shall measure the heat and violence of the poet’s heart when caught and tangled in a woman’s body?” Virginia Woolf, one of the most talented female writers in history, questioned the society, in which women had no say to their future and had nowhere to display their talents. In her article, Shakespeare’s sister, Virginia Woolf addresses this problem and manipulates her audiences, especially upper classes’ males, to pay full attention on gender inequality issues she discusses by using well-developed conceit, allusions to historical evidence and female figures, and appeals to audiences’ pathos to establish her authority and extend the gender issue to a deeper level. Conceits in Woolf’s article help her establish her authority and provide her audience with vivid comparisons between science and fiction. In the second paragraph of her article, for example, Woolf compares science to “a pebble”, which would “[drop] upon the ground”, and fiction to “a spider’s web”, which “[attaches] ever so lightly perhaps, but still [attaches] to life at all four corners.” By providing readers with the images of “a pebble” and “a spider’s web”, which correspond to science and fiction, Woolf conveys the idea that science is solid, real, and unchangeable like a pebble formed with hard materials, whereas fiction is soft, changeable, and invisible like a spider’s web with fine threads. The conceits prove her ability to write effectively and surprisingly, and the
Search for identity in Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre Abstract Charlotte Bronte owes her reputation chiefly to Jane Eyre (1847) and of all the Bronte novels, the obsessional element is the strongest in Jane Eyre. Jane Eyre had something remarkable in it the titanic struggle of the individual against the forces of depersonalising the individual. Her vigour and aspirations lend to her statement and urgency a new kind of realism. Jane Eyre is the picture of a suffering , lonely individual who is tortured mentally and physically at her aunt’s household. This paper is a detailed analysis of Jane’s search for identity at different stages of her life.
We can see the narrator’s weakness throughout the story. It is especially apparent in her narration where she uses phrases like, ‘John says’ which “heads a litany of "benevolent" prescriptions that keep the narrator infantilized, immobilized, and bored literally out of her mind” (Lasner 418). The significance of positions in society greatly influences the woman in this story. She withholds challenging anything her husband says, regardless of how miserable she feels rendering her weak. He makes her stay in a room that she does not like, refuses to let her visit relations, and prevents her from doing the thing she loves the most, which is writing.
During the 19th and 20th centuries, women relentlessly faced discrimination throughout most of their lives, and society considered them unequal to men. The authors Kate Chopin, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and Susan Glaspell wrote about the suppression of women during this time, exposing the unequal treatment that they suffered. Their literary works contain common themes of freedom from the discrimination and harsh treatment of male figures that played a prominent role throughout their lives. In these stories, the main characters freed themselves from unhappy marriages, the inability to express ideas and emotions, and abuse. Through the use of symbolism in Chopin’s “Story of an Hour,” Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper,” and Glaspell’s “A Jury of Her Peers,” the feminist authors of these works illustrate a powerful message of freedom and empowerment to improve societal ideas of social, psychological, and moral awareness of self identity.
Kate Chopin is best known for her ability to express her feelings of the time and is well known feminist of her time. She has wrote many inspiring novels about women having little to no voice in the Antebellum era. Kate hated being a mother and a wife because she felt like she had no power . Thus, she wrote one of her greatest novels Desiree’s Baby. In Kate Chopin’s Desiree's Baby she introduces a theme of male supremacy by her execution of literary devices such as symbolism and irony to prove that it is more important to be male than white in the Antebellum era.
However some female characters like Soraya the prostitute, eventually overrule their men counterparts and stand up for their own cause after periods of hardship and exploitation. Characters such as Melanie Isaacs, Lucy Lurie and Bev Shaw all illustrate vividly the bad image that is associated with females at this current point in society through their everyday experiences. J. M. Coetzee brilliantly expresses the hardship and the poor way women are represented through his literacy techniques and through the realism of the history of this
If women wanted to do anything other than care for the household, they would be looked down upon and titled as an unfit mother or wife. The Canterbury Tales displayed women as an ideology that women could not hold power and that beauty could be obtained by altering their appearance for women to become attributes for men. In this society, Chaucer is sympathetic to women while also realizing that men own women. The Wife of Bath went through five husbands, each giving her just what she wanted. All of her marriages taught her something different, either you get love or your give love.
But due to the selection of few elite representatives, women writers have been forced to rediscover the past a new, forging again and again the consciousness of their sex. This perpetual disruption has led to a sense of alienation among them and prevented them from a sense of collective identity. Furthermore, she emphasizes social and economic condition of women showing a certain discomfort with the idea of a ‘female imagination’, which, for her, reiterates the familiar stereotypes further suggesting permanence, a deep, basic and inevitable difference between male and female ways of perceiving the world. The female literary tradition instead, she argues, is result of the ‘still-evolving relationships between women writers and their society’. Based on this evolutionary assumptions, she divides the female literary tradition into three main phases, namely, Feminine from 1840s to 1880s, Feminist from 1880s to 1920s and finally female from 1920 onwards, though