Essay on The Genesis of Feminism in Literature

Essay on The Genesis of Feminism in Literature

Length: 1126 words (3.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Feminism is a theory that all sexes should have political, economic, and social equality. Hawthorne was a writer during the Romantic Era in literature; one of the many individuals fired by their ideals sought to tell the world about them through their works (e.g. art, literature, music). Hawthorne was raised by his spouseless mother, which probably led him to believe women could be equal to men. Hawthorne grew up with “his mother became overly protective and pushed him toward relatively isolated pursuits” (Grade Saver 1). Whilst Hawthorne’s single mother life prospered, his odium for the belief of Puritanism started when he learned his association to Judge John Hawthorne, one of the judges who oversaw the Salem witch trails. Hawthorne loathed his ancestor and the belief profoundly enough to add a “w” in his last name to disregard any association with his predecessor. The Puritans do not believe in women staying alone without a male companion. On the contrary, his work The Scarlet Letter, introduces the first protagonist that is a feminist. Therefore, because Puritans beliefs were mainly anti-feminist this leads to the question whether Hawthorne was a feminist or not. I credit Nathaniel Hawthorne to be a person that supports feminist ideology through his works, his life and his past.
As a basis, author prepensely make the protagonist of his or her work a certain way, which in turn expresses the author’s own personal beliefs. Hester Prynne, the protagonist of The Scarlet Letter, is considered to be one of first strong willed, independent female protagonists in American literature that she became classified as a feminist. Hester proves to be a feminist when instead of leaving her community for the comforts of England; she stays an...

... middle of paper ...

...ual in America. Furthermore, this starts a lineage of American literature revolving around feminist ideology. It should be known that if Hawthorne is a feminist and made Hester that way purposely then he had just fueled feminist ideals in women and English literature. Therefore if Hawthorne is a feminist then it is beyond the restraints of logical doubt that his works and many others may have helped women procure their equality in social, economic, and political standards. 

Works Cited

Batti, Shalu. "Puritan Family Beliefs." Puritan History (2011): 2. Print.
Grade Saver. "Biography of Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864)." Biography of Nathaniel Hawthorne. Grade Saver, 2014. Web. 07 Mar. 2014. .
Hawthorne, Nathaniel. The Scarlet Letter. Clayton, Delaware: Prestwick House Literary Touchstone Classics, 2008. Print.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay on Male Fear in Historic Literature

- In reading many of the works of the authors of our past such as William Shakespeare, Geoffrey Chaucer, and Kalidasa we tend to see a reoccurring theme in many of the works of times past. This theme that I speak of is the male fear or opinion that a woman has to be a pure and sacred to be considered of any worth or value. This opinion is not specific to any certain time period in time or held by author by a certain region. In fact this particular theme can be seen from European stories to tales from the far east in places such as India as seen in the tales of Sakuntala and the Ring of Recollection and Ramayana....   [tags: feminism, Chaucer, Kalidasa, shakespeare,]

Strong Essays
2164 words (6.2 pages)

Feminism in the Old Testament- Article Reviews Essay

- Juskiene, Vaineta. "Female Image in the Biblical Text: Aspect of Creationsim." Feminist -------------Theology. Journal Biblical Literature, 1 Dec. 2010. Web. 2 Apr. 2012. Rooke, Deborah W. "Feminist Criticism of the Old Testament: Why Bother?"Libraries.Slu.Edu. ----Journal Biblical Literature, 1 Jan. 2007. Web. 6 Apr. 2012. <>.   Feminism in the Old Testament   The first article that is discussed in great proportion is called ‘The Feminist Criticism of the Old Testament: Why Bother?’ by Deborah W....   [tags: bible, theology, religion]

Strong Essays
1265 words (3.6 pages)

A Brief Overview of Feminism Essay example

- A Brief Overview of Feminism Feminism can be roughly described as a movement that seeks to enhance the quality of women’s lives by impacting the norms and moves of a society based on male dominance and subsequent female subordination. Although feminist literary writings began to gain popularity in the 20th century, feminist characters have been around for ages. “Feminist criticism’s self transformations over the past several decades as it engages with both critiques from within and encounters from without- encounters with psychoanalysis, Marxism, Post-Structuralisms, ethnic studies, post-colonial theory, and lesbian and gay studies- have produced a complex proliferation of work no...   [tags: essays papers]

Strong Essays
565 words (1.6 pages)

Analysis Of Mary Wollstonecraft 's A Of The Rights Of Women Essay

- ... This often forgotten tale exhibits many issues Wollstonecraft exposed. Lilith was made from filth and dirt unlike Adam who was made from pure dust, this shows how women’s struggle to become equal to men because women are shown as created unequal. After living with Adam for some time he tired lie with her. She refused his offer. Adam then tried to force her into submission and in rage Lilith left. Adam complained to God, who proceed to make other women. As this story also stresses the inequality between men and women, but it also shows how women are pressured by males’ standards of them....   [tags: Feminism, Gender, Third-wave feminism]

Strong Essays
1154 words (3.3 pages)

Feminism In Literature Essay

- “Top Girls” and “The Handmaid’s Tale” relate to contemporary political issues and feminism. Top Girls is regarded as a unique play about the challenges working women face in the contemporary business world. Churchill once wrote; ‘Playwrights don’t give answers, they ask questions’; she is proving this in Top Girls. She brings up many tough questions over the course of the play, including what success is and if women’s progress in the workplace has been a good or a bad thing. Margaret Atwood wrote a novel named The Handmaid’s tale, this is a novel that had been written from a feminist perspective....   [tags: Literature Analysis]

Strong Essays
921 words (2.6 pages)

Love in the Epic of Gilgamesh and Genesis Essay

- At an early point in history, The Epic of Gilgamesh and the story of Genesis were two texts that set the framework of the entire world. They were two epics that established the foundations of religion, literature, and all other standards that were followed by every category of people. Both texts entice the audience through antique language, and the stories of epic heroes and immortal gods. Sin-Leqi-Unninni and the many writers of the Bible use love as their central theme, yet it unfolds as having distinguishing effects on all characters throughout both texts....   [tags: Epic of Gilgamesh, Genesis ]

Strong Essays
982 words (2.8 pages)

Essay on Feminism in Literature

- Books, plays, and movies that depict culture and social life often make statements about social issues such as gender roles, racism, and class distinction. Stories set up a context in which characters relate, often representing “stock” characters chosen from society and placed in situations where their stereotypical behaviors—and sometimes their breaking of these stereotypes—are highlighted. As feminism became a popular movement in Western countries in general and the United States in particular, female voices were naturally heard through fictional characters....   [tags: Gender Studies ]

Strong Essays
1548 words (4.4 pages)

Feminist Perspective on Eighteenth Century Literature Essay

- Feminist Perspective on Eighteenth Century Literature Feminism during the eighteenth century has come to be defined by the literature of the time. Women, who did not have as many outlets as they do today, expressed their political opinions through literature itself. Although feminist texts existed before the end of the century, women writers in the final decade were seen as more threatening to the dominant patriarchal system. Following the overthrow of the government in France, women in Britain believed that "a revolution in sentiments, manners, and moral opinions was possible in their own country" (5)....   [tags: feminism]

Strong Essays
1155 words (3.3 pages)

Tragedy In Genesis Essay

- Tragedy In Genesis People tend to view tragedy in cataclysmic and catastrophic terms. Every night on the news we hear murders, assassinations and bombings referred to as Atragedies.@ Tragedy need not be an event which affects the community at large. Rather, any event which teaches an important lesson to a specific person or a group of people can be viewed as a type of tragedy. While the Greek tragedies focused upon the catastrophic nature of tragedy, The Biblical Book of Genesis provides the reader with another tragic paradigm....   [tags: Genesis Tragedies Tragedy Essays]

Strong Essays
4978 words (14.2 pages)

Feminism and Slavery Essay

- Feminism and Slavery Harriet Jacobs escaped from slavery and at great personal risk wrote of her trials as a house servant in the South and later fugitive in the North. Her slave narrative entitled Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl gave a true account of the evils slavery held for women, a perspective that has been kept relatively secret from the public. In writing her story, Jacobs, though focused on the subjugation due to race, gave voice subtly to a different kind of captivity, that which men impose on women regardless of color in the patriarchal society of the ninetenth century....   [tags: Literature Feminist Papers]

Strong Essays
2340 words (6.7 pages)