After skimming through Volume 1 of The Norton Anthology Literature by Women, I noticed the reoccurring themes of patriarchy, women subordination, and the strength to be creative despite oppression. During the times that these literary pieces were written, women were constantly battling the patriarchy in order to get basic rights. During the earlier time periods, intelligence was seen as a sign of an evil spirit in a woman, resulting in miniscule amounts of literary works written by women. Women were not provided with equal spaces to creatively express themselves, as mentioned by Virginia Woolf. Moreover, they were not given the same publishing opportunities, many women either went anonymous or by a fake male name to have their works published.
A quote from Megan Wray states, “Patriarchy has infiltrated our society so deeply that if women don’t follow a strict set of ‘proper’ behaviours, they’re immediately deemed wicked. That’s default-evil until proven good” (Wray, 2021). This quote relates to Shakespeare’s misogynistic depiction of women as evil if they are not subservient to their husbands, quiet, and naive. Consequently, when analyzing Hamlet written by Shakespeare from a feminist perspective it is evident that women are portrayed as wicked, impulsive, and superficial. These sexist stereotypes are greatly depicted in Act 1 Scene 5 of the play.
Bailey Schauer Mr. Kenton Advanced English IV 28 March 2023 Misogyny in Shakespeare “Female subservience was saliently prevalent during the Elizabethan era, in which dominant male society oppressed women…” (ALRaznah). This oppression was constantly reflected in literature at this time as well. One predominant playwright during this time period was William Shakespeare, who is not an exception to this pattern.
Although being written centuries apart, the limited expectations of women presented in ‘Othello’ and ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’ differ little from each other. The female characters are confined by society’s expectations of male dominance, female purity and virginity, and the many passive roles of women. Despite the differing legalities surrounding the position of women between the centuries in which the plays were written, both plays explore the impact of how societal conventions confine women and the ways they must comply to be safe in a patriarchal society. The behaviours and treatments of Desdemona, Blanche and Stella illustrate the attitudes enforced on and the behaviours of women throughout both periods in time and it is these attitudes and behaviours that impact the plays to the greatest extent. When characters in either plays defy their norms, or demonstrate a lack of compliance they induce negative consequences, such as the murder of Desdemona and the institutionalisation of Blanche.
Olivia Lynch Mrs. Butterfield AP Lit 5/1/16 When you are ready to dive into the vast world of Shakespeare, you can begin by using what is known as a critical lens. The lens that may help you understand the background details of one of Shakespeare’s plays would be the Historical lens. Although there are many different lens that you can use to interpret a story, the Historical Lens is a great lens to dive into to find what really influenced the great ideas of William Shakespeare as he wrote Hamlet including the role gender plays, the comparison of Elizabeth Tudor, and the religious incorporation throughout the play. First, we can take the Historical Lens and dive into the idea of how gender roles were highly represented in Hamlet
Romeo and Juliet Essay “Shakespeare and Misogyny” A world where men dominate women. This idea was the basis of many Renaissance era dramas. Writers always used to perceive certain genders as having distinctive qualities and traits. Men were held up to a higher respect and given more violent roles than women.
In the award winning article, “Passages in Mary Shelly's Frankenstein: Towards a Feminist Figure of Humanity?” Cynthia Pon addresses masculinity and feminism in terms of conventions, ideals, and practices (Pon, 33). She focused on whether Mary Shelly's work as a writer opened the way to a feminist figure of humanity like Donna Haraway argued. The article has a pre-notion that the audience has read Frankenstein and Haraway's article. Pon has a slight bias, due to her passion as a feminist writer.
Men were seen as masculine and powerful. Shakespeare heavily illustrates the sixteenth century stereotypical gender roles throughout his play, Twelfth Night. During Shakespearean times, women were prohibited from performing on stage, instead, men played their roles. In Twelfth Night, the imitation of the opposite gender originates from necessity and fear. Viola dressed as a man named Cesario to protect herself when she arrives upon foreign land.
It’s no surprise, that Shakespeare’s Macbeth was clearly constructed as a rebellion against femininity roles of the time. During the Elizabethan era, women were raised to believe they were inferior to men since men obtained desired masculine qualities such as strength, and loyalty, whereas women were viewed as figures of hospitality (1; 6; 28-31). Obviously, not being tempted by the luxury of subservient women, William Shakespeare rebuked this twisted belief, applying that women deserve more respect than their kitchen tables.
INTRO - "An Act of Vengeance" by Isabel Allende is a latin-american piece of literature. - According to feminists critics, literature adapted to this patriarchal society we have, and the feminist author, Isabel Allende, has exposed how men and women are in the society through her characters Dulce Rosa Orellano and Tadeo Cespedes. - The feminism theory is the outgrowth of the general movement to empower women worldwide. It recognizes and critiques male supremacy combined with the efforts to change this patriarchic view.
A Modern View of Feminist Criticism William Shakespeare 's "Othello” can be analyzed from a feminist perspective. This criticism focuses on relationships between genders, like the patterns of thoughts, behavior, values, enfranchisement, and power in relations between and within sexes. A feminist examination of the play enables us to judge the distinctive social esteems and status of women and proposes that the male-female power connections that become an integral factor in scenes of Othello impact its comprehension. I believe that the critical lens that provides modern society with the most compelling view of literature is Feminist Criticism because it analyzes distrust and disloyalty among relationships, women being treated as possessions
Society during that time, believed that women weren’t intelligent enough to take on such roles. Women in the Merchant of Venice go against their gender roles. Men did not think that women could ever be as smart as they were, and did not listen or take advice from women that is why Portia had to dress up as a man just to get the men to listen to her and Antonio was saved just because of her intelligence. Here is revealed the idea of love that women can do everything to see their husbands happy. Jessica also goes against the gender role of women, because she is making her own decision about her life.
Feminist point of view means the analysis of any literary works based on the feminist perception. Feminism has gradually become broad and noticeable in its attacks on male-dominated society. The Shakespearian era of the 16th century was a time when women were very inferior in the society. If we compare with other writers, Shakespeare was always careful of women and tried to give them respect in his different writings. If we look at his famous play named Othello we need to judge the equality of women in terms of political, social and economic perspective.
Role of women in The Merchant of Venice Women during 16th century had no individual freedom. Despite the fact that a single woman ruled England at the time of Shakespeare, the Elizabethan society was patriarchal. Women were considered the weaker gender and always in need of being protected. Wealthy woman were highly educated but they had no right to have professions while poor women sometimes would turn to prostitution or become servants to survive. The book The Merchant of Venice was settled in Venice because Shakespeare wanted to show that even in the foundation place of Renaissance were prejudicial ideas and woman was considered as a weak character.