A human’s emotions can be their greatest ally or worst enemy. Positive emotions such as desire and satisfaction primarily assume the role of motivation within a person. However, negative emotions possess an even greater motivational impact due to their ability to drive a person beyond their personal limits. For example, shame is a devastating emotion that causes feelings of inadequacy and failure. As a result, people strive to prevent shame to themselves and others at all costs. However, through these efforts to avoid shame, people are often pushed outside of their comfort zones and accomplish difficult and seemingly unreachable goals. Through her story “St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves”, Karen Russell establishes a main theme of
Shame is a very powerful and social emotion that has been also classified as a form of physical pain. According to Alan Fogel, Ph.D., “When people feel emotional pain, the same areas of the brain get activated as when people feel physical pain…” Additionally, it requires an audience: someone cannot actually experience shame without having people around them. Shame is an evident theme that occurs frequently in the novels: The Joy Luck Club and Flight. It is apparent in both literary works that shame is universal. It embraces both genders and all cultures. Shame crosses all borders and generations. More specifically, just how it affects the relationships between the mothers and daughters in The Joy Luck Club, and how Sherman Alexie portrays Zits in the book Flight. Zits is humiliated by the blood shared between him and his father.
Every year we see family emigrate to other countries, and they face many challenges. The stories “Sweet, Sour, and Resentful”, by Firoozeh Dumas, and from “Fish Cheeks”, by Amy Tan, share similar cultures and really interesting stories. Also, both families from the essay share several challenges that they are face when they move to the United States of America. The two families share many similarities; however, they differ in to keeping their culture, showing openness, and teaching a lesson from their culture to others.
Throughout the story, Hanan Shakyhs focuses on a dysfunctional family in the story “The Persian Carpet”. The child narrator claims that she has control of herself and the situation by stating that she fully knows herself; when in reality, she has forgotten her resolve and was anticipating the meeting with her mother by gladly stating that she would not give up hope on their relationship. However, the situation drastically changed when the narrator discovered the carpet that was laying on the floor which resulted the main character’s outrage. Moreover, she states that “Ilya was almost a blind man who used to go round of the houses of the quarter repairing cane chairs” (Hanan, 254). This passage is imperative to the
“I could’ve been somebody, you know? My mother says and sighs. She has lived in this city her whole life. She can speak two languages. She can sing an opera. She knows how to fix a T.V.” (Cisneros). In the vignette, “A Smart Cookie” by Sandra Cisneros, it states how the mother of a girl named Esperanza regrets not going to school and not becoming the person she wanted to be. Esperanza’s mother complains about not having done something with her life. The mother seemed disgusted with her younger self and told Esperanza not to be like her.
One of the most predominant themes in “The Woman Warrior” is finding ones voice. Throughout the book, voice is referenced many times and most often as a disability of the women in Kingston’s memoirs. Being voiceless is not always a defect that one is born with but can also be due to societal pressures and expectations. The women that appeared as voiceless in the book were most often the ones that did not have an identity of their own. They simply led their lives following someone with a voice hoping that they would be able to live under the shelter of other’s voices. Kingston gave voice to women in this book that were not able to speak for themselves and to deny the accusations and taunts of society. She expresses in the beginning of her book how
The nature of womanhood, or what we perceive as the inherent proclivities that govern only those born as a woman, is often the base argument for the unequal treatment of the female sex. Women are weak, natural-born mothers, unfit to do much else beyond simple household chores and rearing children. This portrait of women seems almost comical in its antiquity; however, we cannot disregard the past, as it shapes the present. The question of the nature of womanhood is rarely allowed nuance, which is a shame, because womanhood can be many, often contradictory things. Instead, the traits we often associate with womanhood stem from society’s projection of what women should be, not necessarily what they are. English novelist Marian Evans Lewes exists counter to 1800’s European beliefs of womanhood. Instead of adhering to society’s standards, she adopts the pen name of a man and becomes a successful author, avoiding judgement for her work based solely on her gender. In her letter to Melusina Fay Peirce, however,
Maxine Hong Kingston's use of talk stories in The Woman Warrior emphasizes that individuals will find a more fulfilling life if they defy the traditional gender norms place on them by society. While contemplating beauty standards in Chinese society in “No Name Woman” Maxine Kingston thinks, “Sister used to sit on their beds and cry together… as their mothers or their slaves removed the bandages for a few minutes each night and let the blood gush back into their veins” (9). From a young age girls are expected to be binding their feet and are told that it is to look beautiful, but in reality that is not why. When a womans feet are bound they are restrained and silenced. These girls could be free and happy but they are restrained by men through this binding. Kingston reveals another example of how defying gender roles can lead to a better life in her story “Shaman.” As her mom is
Miss Strangeworth, a kind old lady in a small town where everybody knows each other.Living all by herself, known for her attracting roses in front of her house.Turns out she isn’t the lady everybody had in their mind, she was more than just an old lady.She is a bully, hurting other people by sending letters anonymously.
The song “Pretty Hurts” was written by Beyonce Knowles. Known for her empowering anthems, she effectively connects with an audience of women with her gut wrenching ballads and unifying messages. She began her career in the girl group, Destiny’s Child, and embarked on a solo career in 2003. Since then, she has proved to be one of most famous and influential female singers of all time. In the song “Pretty Hurts” by Beyonce Knowles the speaker, a young woman who is dealing with body image issues, illustrates the idea that societal beauty standards are unattainable and harmful for young women. However, the speaker feels that women can overcome the pressure to adhere to these standards and be happy with their bodies. This message is directed toward other young women who, like her, are also affected by these detrimental beauty standards.
Images of women healing ill or injured women, or of women healing themselves, have become one of the central tropes in contemporary African American women’s novels. Authors such as Gayl Jones, Alice Walker, Toni Cade Bambara, and Toni Morrison utilise the trope of healing to measure past and present oppressions of women of color and to discuss what can and what cannot be healed, forgotten and forgiven. Much focus is put on how healing could be accomplished. Some hurt, they say, is so distant that it cannot be reached; other hurt goes so deep that there may be no possibility of healing...some pain can only be healed through a reconnection to the African American community and culture (Gunilla T. Kester 114)
Similar in nature, lesser offences such as tormenting are found in Susan Faludi’s writing, “The Naked Citadel”, where the student population contains cadets that are mentally unhealthy. Because The Citadel has an all male student body, it becomes easier for them to share the same distaste for females wanting to join The Citadel. The distaste that they carry for females is shown through the inhumane, continuous tormenting that the students inflict on each other. Susan Faludi describes some of these acts, where “The beaten knobs were the women, ‘stripped’ and humiliated, and the predatory upperclassmen were the men, who bully and pillaged” (85). The men feel need the power to hurt others due to their seclusion of females, ironically again since
In the "Metamorphosis" Kafka uses metaphors to show several ways that public shaming can lead to the harm of one’s self-esteem; eventually leading to complete isolation. Throughout the story Gregor was isolated from his social life, his family life, and his professional life. The amount of shame that Gregor encountered also led to the lack of communication between him and the members of his family. Although Gregor experienced extreme isolation and self-hate due to public shame, he is one of many people who deal with the pressure of society on a daily basis. The amount of shame and doubt is experienced by people in our society every day and has become somewhat of a norm. Three of the most recognized and publicly shamed people of our time are: Caitlyn Jenner, Kim Kardashian, and Monica Lewinski. Notice the three individuals named are women. Within society it is most common to see public shaming and scapegoating towards women. In the text “Metamorphosis”, the author Kafka was able to portray the unseen public shaming of a male. Kafka was efficient in relating the relevance of public shaming by objectifying the person Gregor was and the person he became. The objectiveness has played an important role in the text, as it serves as a barrier between Gregor and his family.
Steven, Heather , Glen Burnie High, and Anne Arundel County Public Schools. "Japanese American Internment During WWII." County Public School System and the Center for History Education at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Japanese American Internment During World War II (n.d.): n. pag. Umbc.edu. Teaching American History. Web.
Throughout history, women have been locked in a struggle to free themselves from the borderline that separates and differentiate themselves from men. In many circles, it is agreed that the battleground for this struggle and fight exists in literature. In a