Gerda Lerner considers differences in societies, and defines categories or stages in the historiography of American women 's history. Societies create gender roles over time, and gender roles are deeply embedded in culture. Differences shape society, from gender to race, and class. Lerner states the stages reflect how the historian 's gaze changes over time as ideas evolve. Compensatory history identifies influential women (leadership) and their activity.
Finally, by paying attention to the idea that gender and politics have an effect on one another we can get a clearer picture of where women’s history fits into the history books. In conclusion, Scott’s claim that historians should be attentive to both the ways in which gender constructs politics and politics constructs gender is a thought provoking comment that must be considered if an accurate and unbiased history is to be produced. Politics and gender are both socially construed notions and by definition will have an influence on one another.
Martineau was also passionate and active in the women's rights movement. She studied and focused on the power relationships and inequalities between men and women. In 1873 Harriet Martineau wrote in her book, Society in America, that it is important to address the conditions of inequality faced by
The women seen in fieldwork were merely identified in regard to their gender specific roles, something these feminist anthropologists hoped to rectify. Those women deserved to be accurately portrayed for the part they played in the human experience. The 1960’s and 70’s belonged to a tumultuous period in American history, characterized by an array of social and political movements including anti-Vietnam war activism, the origination of a “counterculture” which strove for societal liberation, the civil rights movement, and the rise of feminism (McGee & Warms 2011: 396). Women began to question the limitations of their gender, rallying to promote their own rights and interests. Women’s liberation became encompassed within a variety of disciplines, including anthropology, exploring themes found cross-culturally such as patriarchy, discrimination, and objectification.
I begin with the analysis of the differences; these are the setting’s comparison as well as the social context’s one. I have chosen these two aspects since I consider that the social context was a key factor for the development of the feminist movement as well as the histor... ... middle of paper ... ...r. Some critics, and notably, Elaine Showalter points out that Ophelia has become the symbol of the distraught and hysterical woman in modern culture. Atwood's Lady Oracle is a feminist novel even only for the fact that its central theme is about the formation of gender identity. Joan writes and is written about; if Atwood writes about Joan's childhood experiences, about her interaction with male partners and other woman, then Joan writes about the precariousness of feminine subjectivity in a male-dominated world thanks to her character, Charlotte. All in all, I would like to conclude in saying that both literary works can be analyzed, interpreted and argued about from many perspectives; Hamlet, because of the play's dramatic structure and depth of characterization, and Lady Oralce, because of the complexity of the main character and the novel's form novelty.
Lerner argued academics should create new levels and transitions in historical research, such as sexuality, gender, and female consciousness. She also advocated to analyze research through factors of “race, class, ethnicity, and possibly religion (intersectionality).” Once society has hit this pinnacle will we see the true history of women--a history which will be an “ongoing functioning in the male-defined world, on their [women] own terms.” Are Lerner’s works a sound contribution to historiography? To comprehend this question one must search her ideas and works of the field. In one article she wrote, “The striking fact about the historiography of women is the general neglect of the subject...[by] historians. As long as historians held
The author examines the responsibilities, expectations, and limitations facing women in their roles, stressing the ways in which occupations, space, race, and social status altered women’s social standing for an academic audience. This source is valuable because it provides reliable evidence on how women during the colonial time lived and goes into great detail about these women’s lives. Some limitations are that this book focuses on broad topics through various
In contrast, there is an alternative perspective (i.e. nurture) that has been gaining popularity. This view holds that gender is not biologically based, but rather it is a cultural construct that is socially learned (264). In other words, gender is a category and the characteristics attributed to this social category are culturally/socially defined. Speaking in the context of literature, Jehlen states that “the character conventionally assigned men and women in novels reflect history and culture rather than nature .
Margaret Urban Walker’s Moral Understandings is most certainly a feminist study in ethics. The main purpose of her writings is to “account for the gender inequality in the socially constructed relationship between power—the political—on the one hand and the knowledge of truth and reality—the epistemological—on the other" (Walker 1998, 20). However, her approach is quite different than some of the feminist theorists that have come before her. Instead of taking what I call a “care-focused” approach where the primary task is to rehabilitate culturally associated “feminine” values, Walker takes “power-focus” approach in which she expresses an acute sensitivity to the fact that moral life and social life are intertwined. This power-focused perspective insists that our moral responsibilities flow from our social position, which as Walker notes, depends on our "gender, age, economic status, race, and other factors that distribute powers and forms of recognition differentially and hierarchically" (1998, 22).
In the end, Dickinson’s clever structuring and diction in “The Wife” communicates themes of gendered inequality and suppression in her era that are still relevant today. By giving importance to cultural forms such as popular culture, as well as literature and the arts, it becomes more evident how gendered systems of inequality and privilege embedded in these works reflects and creates our identities and reality today.