Elaine Showalter And The Ideal Woman Essays

Elaine Showalter And The Ideal Woman Essays

Length: 3315 words (9.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Megan O’niell

100832504

Rob Holton

ENGL 3605 A

December 8 2014

Elaine Showalter and the Ideal Woman

Elaine Showalter is a feminist writer who analyzes the oppression of women in psychiatry. Her contributions to British and American literature have brought new insights to feminism and have helped to influence other female authors to do the same. In writing “Toward a feminist poetics”, Showalter does not show women as being multiple women, but as a single “woman”. It is implied that she does not believe that there can be many different types of women, and that there can only be one. Showalter writes in this article about how women cannot become doctors or lawyers and cannot aspire to be anything other than a writer. Showalter argues that women must follow the lead of a man in his writing. Women who take after men to learn to write instead of writing about the issues of women, is wrong. What Showalter is trying to state is how women are capable of writing for themselves and breaking the glass ceiling. What is convenient is to write the ways that they have been taught to write. Women will write what they know. Most of what has been written in history is by a man because women had been unable to get published without either being under a false name or without the help of their husbands.

Feminism is about rethinking the canon about women. It is opening up the perceptions about what it means to be a woman in society and the roles they play. Before feminism there was an exclusion of women from history. Women have been excluded throughout history. It has been an ongoing battle for feminists to fight for their rights. No one seems to know what it means to be a “woman”. Apparently the nerves that connect to the brain are different...


... middle of paper ...


... reasoning. Women can overcome these barriers if they keep writing. Women are taught to create poetry. (p.5) The sentence of a man compared to a sentence of a woman is very different and we must highlight these differences instead of being offended by them. The novel is usually adapted to the body, and the body should not have anything to do with the way a woman writes. Women should be equal in the way they are perceived by their writing, to men. Men would not have their writing associated to their body because men are seen as being more capable to write than women. Women are always being distracted by their children, and are often stuck with the cooking responsibilities and so the belief is that they need something short to read. The nerves that feed the brain are essentialism. Everything about the concept of women paired with literature is discriminated against.


Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Hamlet: Branagh's Ophelia and Showalter's Representing Ophelia Essay

- Hamlet: Branagh's Ophelia and Showalter's Representing Ophelia       Ophelia falls to the floor, her screams contrasting eerily with the song pieces she uses as her speech.  In an instant she is writhing and thrusting her pelvis in such a gross sexual manner that it becomes clear that, in his film interpretation of William Shakespeare's Hamlet, Kenneth Branagh wants to imply a strong relationship between female insanity and female sexuality.  Such a relationship is exactly what Elaine Showalter discusses in her essay -- "Representing Ophelia: Women, Madness, and the Responsibilities of Feminist Criticism" -- "I will be showing first of all the representational bonds between female insani...   [tags: Movie Film]

Strong Essays
1997 words (5.7 pages)

Elaine Showalter's Representing Ophelia Essay

- Elaine Showalter's Representing Ophelia     Elaine Showalter defines Ophelia in many typical ways in her essay "Representing Ophelia: Women, Madness, and the Responsibilities of Feminist Criticism." She discusses her significance in reference to how she reveals Hamlet's characteristics. Showalter touches upon the idea that Ophelia's character is one that is symbolic of the psychiatric theories of Freud. Showalter also attributes the characterization of Ophelia to not only the audience, but also to the actress that plays the part....   [tags: GCSE Coursework Shakespeare Hamlet]

Free Essays
1240 words (3.5 pages)

Essay about The Ideal Image Of A Woman

- The advertisements people watch today showcase women as being sex symbols in order to sell the products being advertised. When other women are exposed to this they contemplate they have to have the same assets as the women in the advertisement. Some people consider beautiful females in ads as being beneficial to other females by giving them more confidence instead of taking it away. Ads attempt to obtain more buyers by degrading other women into thinking if they buy this product they can look like the females on television....   [tags: Woman, Female, Girl, Sexual objectification]

Strong Essays
1759 words (5 pages)

The Girl By Elaine Cynthia Potter Essay

- Women are always being judged and told to be like a lady, however society has never looked down upon a man for not being a man. Women are continuously getting talked about for not doing what society thinks a lady should basically know when she grows up. Before Jamaica Kincaid, her name was Elaine Cynthia Potter the author of “The Girl’’ had to change her name because her family did not believe that their daughter should become a writer(Cassidy). She was from an island called Antigua whom she had only one sibling and has an island girl she had to live a certain lifestyle (Cassidy)....   [tags: Female, Woman, Gender, Male]

Strong Essays
1272 words (3.6 pages)

The Ideal Woman Essay

- The Ideal Woman Henry David Hwang’s M. Butterfly highlights the stereotypical woman and draws a picture of the “perfect woman.” The perfect woman’s character traits include submissiveness, passiveness, modesty, beauty, dislike for sex, gentleness, and quietness, according to Hwang’s characters. These traits are shown in Song, labeling her as a perfect woman. The reader later finds out that Song is not a woman at all; she is a man. This challenges the image of the ideal woman. All of the female characters have flaws, proving to the reader that the concept of realizing the perfect woman is not possible....   [tags: Character Analysis ]

Strong Essays
1280 words (3.7 pages)

The Ideal Woman Essay

- It is not novel for members of a society to be preoccupied with the appearances of themselves or of others. Since the Ancient Greeks, humans have struggled with the importance of aesthetic appeal. In the 1920s, the ideal woman was seen as one who was slim, beautiful, age-less, and successful. It was believed that women had to be pretty in order to find a mate, or they would risk losing a potential husband. However, this is a main factor in evolution. It is a part of natural selection for animals to pick a mate based on their appearance, because then the desirable traits get passed on to their offspring for survival....   [tags: Human physical appearance, Physical attractiveness]

Strong Essays
1422 words (4.1 pages)

Essay about Elaine Potter Richardson 's Life

- Elaine Potter Richardson was raised by her mother and her stepfather while living in a Caribbean island with much poverty. Her mother sent her to live in the United States at the age of seventeen, which left her with no other choice other than to provide for herself. After she briefly attended college in New Hampshire, she moved to New York and began to work for the New Yorker. There, she met Allen Shawn. They married in 1979 which later ended in a divorce. She began to write personal stories in connection with her mother, her father, and her youngest brother who died of AIDS....   [tags: Family, Woman, Wife, Marriage]

Strong Essays
1098 words (3.1 pages)

Essay about Elaine Tyler May’s Homeward Bound

- Elaine Tyler May’s Homeward Bound      Elaine Tyler May's Homeward Bound weaves two traditional narratives of the fifties -- suburban domesticity and rampant anticommunism -- into one compelling historical argument. Aiming to ascertain why, unlike both their parents and children, postwar Americans turned to marriage and parenthood with such enthusiasm and commitment, May discovers that cold war ideology and the domestic revival [were] two sides of the same coin: postwar Americans' intense need to feel liberated from the past and secure in the future....   [tags: Elaine Tyler May Homeward Bound Essays]

Strong Essays
1160 words (3.3 pages)

Essay on The Ideal Woman

- Ideal Woman In magazines stuffed with models and advertisements, billboards on the highway, and actresses on television, the message of what women should look like is everywhere. Advertising is a powerful force in our culture due to the exposure. The decided presence of these images in effect shapes the image of women today. It is very unfortunate that the media influences American society to the point that it defines the "ideal woman". The "ideal woman" is defined as someone that is thin, young, and beautiful....   [tags: essays research papers]

Free Essays
579 words (1.7 pages)

Ideal Woman Essay

- Does anybody know what the ideal woman is supposed to look like. Is this woman thin and tall or fat and short. Why are woman judged on how they look and how they dress, but males are not. Why are images of woman everywhere. Why do woman feel that they have to be gorgeous so society can love her. Believe it or not, society plays a big role in people lives. The biggest role it probably plays is how a female should look. For instance, if you look at the television, if you look at movies, and if you look in different magazines covers, most of the woman appears to look thin....   [tags: essays research papers fc]

Free Essays
928 words (2.7 pages)