Plath's The Bell Jar -The Liberated Woman

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Plath's The Bell Jar -The Liberated Woman

I tried to imagine what it would be like if Constantin were my husband.

It would mean getting up at seven and cooking him eggs and bacon and toast and coffee and dawdling about in my nightgown and curlers after he'd left for work to wash up the dirty plates and make the bed, and then when he came home after a lively, fascinating day he'd expect a big dinner, and I'd spend the evening washing up even more dirty plates till I fell into bed, utterly exhausted. (Plath, 68)

This lifestyle described by Liberated Woman, who was shunned by the Liberated Woman, Esther Greenwood in Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar was prevalent among married women during and around the 1950's. Although the description sounds unappealing it was said to be the ultimate fulfillment for a woman. Even if she was not completely satisfied, a woman was not to question her role in the marriage or in society. Betty Friedan wrote in 1963, " for over 15 years there was no word of this yearning... [for] all the columns, books and articles [were written] by experts telling women their role was to seek fulfillment as wives and mothers" ( Bloom, 461). If a woman broke away from this pattern of living an unfulfilling life solely as a wife and mother, she was considered a Liberated Woman.

There was the desire to be a Liberated Woman and there was also, during this time, the women's liberation movement. The whole time leading up to the women's liberation movement in the late 60's, it became evident that a change in the lives of women would be necessary. The Civil Rights movement was taking place as well as other social movements. Women began to realize that although they were t...

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...e them seriously is a whole other story.

Works Cited

Friedan, Betty. "The Problem That Has No Name." Takin' It To The Streets: A Sixties Reader, pp. 459-467. ed. Alexander Bloom and Wini Breines. New York: Oxford University Press, 1995.

Mainardi, Pat. "The Politics of Housework." Takin' It To The Streets: A Sixties Reader, pp. 491-495. ed. Alexander Bloom and Wini Breines. New York: Oxford University Press, 1995.

"Manifesto Redstocking's ." Takin' It To The Streets: A Sixties Reader, pp. 485-487. ed. Alexander Bloom and Wini Breines. New York: Oxford University Press, 1995.

Plath, Sylvia. The Bell Jar. New York: Bantan Books, 1971

Rossi, Alice. "Job Discrimination and What Women Can Do about it." Takin' It To The Streets: A Sixties Reader, pp.468-473. ed. Alexander Bloom and Wini Breines. New York: Oxford University Press, 1995.
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