Stereotypes In St. Perpetua

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Weak and irrational, are just a couple terms used to describe women. These terms paint women as things that must be controlled, cause if not, they are not only a detriment to themselves but society as well. Very rarely is a woman described as strong, brave or independent, instead such terms are implied, forcing a reader to read between the lines. St. Perpetua is a prime example, she fights against the patriarchal society, breaking through stereotyping and emerging a new woman both strong and brave. Stereotyping is a very dangerous tool used to force a person into a specific role. Women, more specifically, are victims of patriarchal stereotyping, becoming prisoners of a society. St. Perpetua spends her much of her life conforming to societal norms, such as, getting…show more content…
St. Perpetua breaks through all negative notions and shows a woman’s true strength through her death. In the face of death St. Perpetua stands strong in her beliefs “with shining steps, as the true wife of Christ, as the darling of God, abashing with the high spirit in her eyes the gaze of all.” (75) When St. Perpetua should have been the most terrified she neither pleads nor sheds a tear instead holds true to her beliefs and accepts her fate with pleasure showing an inner strength that one can’t help but to admire as stands with her head held high. Moreover, “however that she might taste something of the pain, was struck on the bone and cried out and herself guided to her throat the wavering hand of the young untried gladiator.” (77) St. Perpetua instead of crying and yelling as is expected reacts to the botched slaying by quickly regaining her composure and were the young man falters, she assistes, and returns the sword to her neck. St. Perpetua’s actions resembles that of a man she withstands the physical pain with little complaining and with no fear to be seen offers a helping hand in her

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