The plague of male dominancy and female oppression has spread throughout time and cultures like a pandemic infection, targeting women. Sylvia Plath’s “Daddy” and Janice Mirikitani’s “Suicide Note,” show the struggle and pain that oppressive forces perpetrated on women. Although, both speakers are oppressed the way they end the oppression and the cause of it are very different. Patriarchy has always existed, and it affects women all over the world. For example, banned bride abductions in Central Asia have continued to occur, and the women who resist abduction, risk death, or becoming ostracized from their country (Werner 2).
“Suicide Note” by Janice Mirikitani is a poem that attempts to capture the thoughts and feelings of a young girl before she tragically commits suicide. The speaker is an Asian American female, and so is the author. Addressed to her mother and father the note reads, “I apologize for disappointing you. I’ve worked very hard” (Mirikitani line 7). The quote is an apology, not for the pain her parents will fill when she passes, but for their disappointment of her not achieving their expectations. The girl knows her life would be different if she were born a son she states, “If only I were a son, shoulders broad as the sunset threading through pine, I would see the light in my mother’s eyes, or the golden pride in my father’s dream” (10-14). The speaker wishes she were born a son to her mother and father because if she was her parents would recognize her achievements and be proud of her. It is common in most Asian culture’s to place women inferior to men, and for parents to have higher expectations for their daughter than for their son who had achieved their expectations the moment the...
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... her only way to escape is through her own death, and in Plath’s poem, the speaker kills the men that have oppressed her for so many years. Although, the theme of each poem may not instill the underlined issue, the vibrant imagery, metaphors, repetition, and meter in each poem tell the reader the real problem, one of women crippled from the plague of oppressive forces.
blasing, mutlu konuk. american poetry: the rhetoric of its forms. 1987. 14 november 2011.
mirikitani, janice. essense 24 (1993): 46. 13 november 2011.
shmoop editorial team. shmoop. 11 november 2008. 13 november 2011.
shulman, ernest. "vulnerability factors in sylvia plath's suicide." death studies (1998): 597.
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