Gender Inequality In Literature Essay

Gender Inequality In Literature Essay

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As we all know, gender inequality is a social issue that has been addressed over the years and has however, given rise to other issues such as misogyny, feminism, male sovereignty, female oppression and criticism, and the list goes on. Most times, especially during the Elizabethan era, before feminists began to fight for their rights as women, women were viewed as substandard when compared to men and they were classified more as possessions rather than as people. These gender biased opinions were developed under the reign of Queen Elizabeth and Shakespeare’s explicit exhibition of this fact in his plays can be traced to the circumstances at which the society was at that time. Shakespeare shared this opinion and had few female characters in his works and even when he did have them, he portrays them as either “deceivers”, for example Cleopatra in “Anthony and Cleopatra” and Cressida in “Troilus and Cressida” or better still, he just cuts off the female role in the plays. Even if it appears as though Shakespeare exhibited a form of short shrift towards women in his works, we are however in no position to judge his beliefs concerning whether or not he had a hatred for women because it might just appear so because of the occurrences in the time at which he made his works, a time where the unsympathetic treatment of women was just a customary trend. We are however, uncertain as to whether Shakespeare’s display of sexism in The Tempest is intentional or not. However, I personally think most times it is unintentional, because sometimes he presents his female characters very outstanding roles, just like Miranda.
Ann Thompson, author of “Miranda, Where’s Your Sister?” tried to look into the dogma of femininity in the context of this book,...


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...he issue of male sovereignty, as well as misogyny is still brought up in some parts of the world and we still have men being considered as superior over women. For example, in some countries women are not allowed to hold high ranking positions. There is still this stereotypical way of thinking amongst men that a woman does not have the ability to rule over or coordinate what a man does. Some even go to the extent of quoting Bible verses about why God created Adam (First man) before he thought of creating Eve. This might be true but I suppose that if God was going to put a specific order to his creations then he would have specifically mentioned it somewhere in the Bible. I believe that every human being should be classified as equals and allowed to fulfill their maximum capacity and should not be disregarded in any form or fashion whether by race, sex or culture.

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