There is a prevalent desire in history to determine the right place for women in society, especially as the modern period ushers out the end of the Victorian era, though women have existed as the counterpart to man for all time. John Stuart Mill’s The Subjection of Women as a pedagogic composition will be used for better understanding the nature and predicaments of Thomas Hardy’s Sue Bridehead as she determines her place in society in his novel Jude the Obscure. Mill’s essay explores the basis of social institutions which encourage and reinforce the subordination of women as the weaker gender to highlight the inherent wrongness of this practice. As Mill’s essay describes the existence of female intelligence and individuality that is constantly suppressed, Hardy presents his female protagonist Sue Bridehead as a woman entirely unique for her time and place in society. Sue Bridehead’s nature and way of life conflicts with what society prescribes her to be as a woman, as she tries to balance living happily without social pressures infringing on her individuality.
Oppression of characters is usually fuelled by external causes. In the case of Madame Bovary and Middlemarch, external causes like gender norms result in the oppression of women. In Madame Bovary, society's expectations of a wifely figure restricts Emma's desire to climb the social ladder. In Middlemarch, the dogmas about female intellectual abilities propagated by characters like Lydgate and Casaubon hinder Dorothea's ability to become an intellectual within society. Critic Howard Kushner writes that “ideology... emphasized women as mothers and guardians of the family” (Kushner 1).
However, Lorca does not let the needs of his women fall through the cracks. He gives his female characters a voice, universally representative of all women, as they try to survive under circumstances that suppress their true desires. All of Lorca’s women grapple most with the conflict between conformity and rebellion, and the conflict between reason and passion. This essay will analyze the evolution of Lorca’s women through a consideration of Blood Wedding, Yerma, and The House of Bernarda Alba. In Blood Wedding, Lorca’s women are used as a vehicle to represent the social constraints and expectations of women in society, and their fight against these restrictions.
For instance, when she learned that the Vicario twins were planning to kill Santiago Nasar, she did everything in her power to try and stop them from committing the crime. At multiple times during the day, she offered them drinks to try and get them drunk and delay them. Then, Clotilde told the twins to wait until the Bishop left the town to kill him, but that did not stop the death. She, also, tried to tell her husband, a police officer and Father Carmen Armador about the plan, but they did nothing in regards of fully stopping the twins from committing the murder, each with their own excuse for why they did not intervene. She knew that she was running out of time and at every chance she got, she tried to stop the twins.
This indicates that there is no space for women to assert or even voice her own choice or opinion. The novel makes us understand how the sister had been trained rigorously on understanding their role as a wife. “The girls had been reared to get married”(p) or Purisima’s claim “Any man will be happy with them because they have been raised to suffer”(p34). The author has also hinted on failed marriages in the novel. Santiago’s mother Placida Linero as told in the novel has a loveless relationship with her husband.
When Creon came to know of Antigone’s plan he called for her and when she did not deny of the fact that she buried her dishonorable brother’s body he grew angry and assumed Ismene her younger sister had helped her. Ismene being the good sister that she is lied and said she had helped Antigone, after that Creon ordered for them to be locked up. Haemon, Creon's son and Antigone's fiancé, promised to be loyal to his father and not talk to Antigone but he tried his best to persuade his father to spare her life, but they end... ... middle of paper ... ...ad noble intentions and was completely loyal to the state, but in the end he is only human and his main weakness was his poor judgment. This play makes one reconsider what make people righteous and what make them temporarily lose judgment. I find it very interesting because no matter how old this play is, the concept is real and initially got through to the audience.
The Most Tragic Character in Medea by Euripides Medea is the story of an estranged woman who wishes to seek revenge on her husband (who has left her for another woman) by poisoning his new wife. This, however, is made more difficult when the King of the land, Creon, tells Medea to leave, mainly because he is scared of her. She appeals to him for one more day to sort things out, and uses persuasion by making him feel pity for her when she says "This one day let me stay, to settle some plans for my exileâ€¦since their own father is not concerned to help them. Show some pity: you are a father tooâ€¦their fate is very hard". Medea tells the Chorus, a group of women from Corinth that this one day is all she needs to get her revenge.
Although they were engaged and their sexual intercourse was consensual, Claudio is sentenced to death in order to serve as an example to the other Viennese citizens. Isabella, Claudio's sister, is about to enter a nunnery when her brother is arrested. She is unfailingly virtuous, religious, and chaste. When she hears of her brother's arrest, she goes to Angelo to beg him for mercy. He refuses, but suggests that there might be some way to change his mind.
Hellena doesn’t want her desires to be controlled and feels she has the right to love if she chooses and who she can love. Hellena can be seen as a modern day free spirit, and Behn uses this as a way to resist the double standard applied to woman and the idealization of what a “proper” woman is. Hellena falls for a man, Willmore, while attending Carnival and it is her wit in the dialogue with Willmore that the reader sees that Hellena is not foolish in knowing how men view and treat their women. Hellena knows that Willmore will not be faithful and uses her virginity as a way for him to marry her because that is her only way of not going into nunnery as she says, “What shall I get? A cradle full of noise and mischief, with a pack of repentance at my back” (pg 590).
Additionally these gender norms that Marques develops through the setting also affect the other male characters. Santiago Nasar is the man that allegedly took Angela’s virginity, Marques portrays him as being innocent. Santiago allegedly has premarital sex with Angela but if men are allowed to have premarital sex who are they having sex with? They must be having sex with someone, the small size of the town leaves very little options. If women are condemned but men are applauded why are men even allowed to have sex in the first place, should women also be allowed to have premarital sex.