Both males and females have influences that help decide the ways in which they think, dress, speak, and act within the situation of society. Cultural and personal gender roles are a big influence on the way people live. Learning plays a role in this process of shaping gender roles. Peers, parents, movies, teachers, television, books, and movies could all teach and reinforce gender roles throughout the lifespan.
Gender roles contribute to both the past and the present. However, gender roles were a bigger issue in the past. Men were seen as superior to women. More specifically, I’d like to focus on gender roles that convey male dominance. The superior roles of men are prominent in many works of literature that I am associated with such as The Color Purple by Alice Walker.
In Alice Walker’s The Color Purple, gender roles are one of the more interesting concepts. One way to view the discriminatory gender roles is through the character of Mr. ______, also known as Albert. Albert married Celie when she was younger, solely because she would have the skill of taking care of the kids and kee...
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Walker brought most of the horrific and even sickening scenes of the book to life, with the help and influence of society in history. One of the greatest influences to have an effect on Walker's style of writing and especially The Color Purple, were instances from slavery and prejudice. The whites owned and empowered America during the time of slavery. They had no respect for any other race, which they thought of as substandard. As Lean'tin Bracks stated, blacks were considered to be racially inferior, and they were used for the exploitation of the white culture. The whites used the black people as animals, and made them do their every bidding. Blacks and whites were separated form each other and this segregation of the two races barred blacks from legal and economic access, and they were put to punishment by the white culture. Interaction between the two races rarely occurred other than specific affairs or whites intruding on blacks. There were no penalties to pay by whites, therefore intrusions were common, and they took advantage of the African-Americans. The intrusions varied from breaking and entering to rape and murder for no apparent reason (84). Walker used this basis of racism to grip the reader and take them through a story of a women, who survives physical, verbal, and emotional abuse, everyday.
The gender role approach focuses on learning behaviors that are defined as masculine or feminine. Gender roles are influenced early in life. Children quickly learn that they are girls or boys and act accordingly. Gender roles make women unequal. For example, issues such as whether women should serve in the military, or men should be eligible for family benefits are questions arising out of gender roles.
My reaction to this article was quiet agreeing. I agreed with many things stated in this article, the article explained the story exactly right. For example when it states the relationship between Shug and Celie because Shug was always there for Celie. The article did a really good job explaining the novel and gave a really good report. (The New York Times).
If we read The Color Purple with 'gender on the agenda' as required we can identify how the form contributes to the impact of the narrative. The Color Purple is a story that unfolds through the writing and exchange of letters. Opening with the line 'You better not never tell nobody but God. It'd kill your mammy.' A warning issued by the abusive 'father' (later and importantly discovered to be step-father) of the central character Celie who indeed pours out her secret to God and later to her sister Nettie about her life and her pain.
In 1982, Walker published her most controversial and famous book, ‘The Color Purple’. It is written in the form of epistolary (letter), the novel included vivid descriptions of rape, incest, bisexuality, lesbianism, and “black- on – black” violence and abuse. It recounted the tragic but ultimately triumphant life story of Celie, a young victimized black woman. A year later it appeared it got Pulitzer Prize in fiction and National Book Award, and in 1985 it was adapted as motion picture. Walker’s longtime best- seller transcended black and gender
A common human behavior due to illusory superiority is to overestimate skill, capability or perception of oneself in comparison to others or underestimate it. Alice Walker, a black woman herself, a partaker of feminist and anti-racist activism has created a scenario that nearly every person from any cultural background can identify with. Miss Millie in the Color Purple has, in fact, internalized racism and refuses to acknowledge it, maintaining that she is “less racist” than the “other white people”. While viewing herself as superior among blacks and whites, Miss Millie remains in denial about her subtle racism and is unaware of the fact that her comments are insults rather than the compliments she assumes them to be. This disconnect fuels Sofia’s response, “Hell no”, as an offended person of color. With the use of imagery, language, and the character’s unconscious and conscious motives, Walker accurately depicts a scene bursting with themes of racism, sexism, and cultural stereotypes.
Gender, sex, gender roles, masculine, and feminine; these are all things that can be shaped by society. Your gender roles can change, but not your sex; that is given at birth. If gender is shaped a certain way, then that changes us to fit those societal norms of gender roles, masculinity and femininity, patriarchy, and how to maintain this gender order.
Our society has been taught that gender roles are inherent, biological and behavioral characteristics. This belief is perpetuated through mass media, toys, clothing trends, advertisements, architecture, food and virtually everything else around us. This process begins at birth and continues through adulthood. These gender roles that society has set before us before us can be demeaning and create obstacles as well.
Suggested roles of all types set the stage for how human beings perceive their life should be. Gender roles are one of the most dangerous roles that society faces today. With all of the controversy applied to male vs. female dominance in households, and in the workplace, there seems to be an argument either way. In the essay, “Men as Success Objects”, the author Warren Farrell explains this threat of society as a whole. Farrell explains the difference of men and women growing up and how they believe their role in society to be. He justifies that it doesn’t just appear in marriage, but in the earliest stages of life. Similarly, in the essay “Roles of Sexes”, real life applications are explored in two different novels. The synthesis between these two essays proves how prevalent roles are in even the smallest part of a concept and how it is relatively an inevitable subject.
Many authors use the themes oppression and victory to define a struggle. This technique allows readers to relate with characters on a personal level. Alice Walker constantly uses this theme in her short story “Everyday Use” with her character Maggie and in her book The Color Purple with her character Celie. Both tales depict these women as underdogs who overcome obstacles to realize her full potential at the end.
There is a time in the book that there is a strong example of sexism, not directly towards Celie but to a friend. It changes and effects her because she is stuck watching how women are being treated, but making her want to fight back, which is the start of her independence. He asks her to be his maid and take care of his family and she responds with a response that he does not like. It leads to him slapping her and her going to jail for the way she responded. “Mayor look at Sofia, push his wife out the way. Stick out his chest. Girl, what you say to Miss Millie? Sofia say, I say, Hell no. He slap her,” (Walker, 77). This type of sexism in the book does not occur directly towards Celie, but since Sofia is her friend, it does show Celie that
Men and women throughout time, typically follow a set of rules or general attitudes that are accepted by society, this is known as gender roles. This mindset is not naturally instilled and must be taught from generation to generation. How children are raised can affect their mindset as they grow up over time. Children can be influenced by many factors, such as; parents, media, location, and social standing. Parenting, along with the environment can be viewed as key factors that affects youth development and instill mindsets, such as gender roles.
The novel, The Color Purple by Alice Walker was set in the post “World War I
It took her many years to break free from the abuse of her husband and
In this paper the author analyzes the contents of the color purple. He attempts to answer the question of what makes Alice Walker’s most popular literary work a feminist novel. First he points out the stigma that involves nearly all of the male gender depicted throughout the story. He takes the time to address the rape that was involved and the manner in which it was implemented. Then the paper discusses how in the color purple women are depicted as being oppressed. And also it talks about how Celie grows as a woman thanks to the aid of two strong female companions.