Margaret Atwood is considered to be one of the greatest living writers to hail from Canada. While she is a critically acclaimed novelist, Atwood is also celebrated for her influential and empowering poetry and can also be regarded as the Canadian literary poster child for feminist-themed writing. Feminist literature, Atwood’s included, gears towards characterising and constituting equality between men and women. A number of Atwood’s poems encompass similar motifs that link together her feminist expressions. The represented themes of “the search for identity” and societal exploitation of women provide readers with true and poignant expressions of women’s internal struggles while they are also externally judged.
In many of Atwood’s poems, such as “They Eat Out”, “This is a Photograph of Me”, “The Land Lady”, “The Double Voice” and more, the theme of a woman finding herself and/or battling society’s exploitive tendencies is quite clear, yet demonstrated in and applied to different situations, different characters, and different female points of view, as to not generalize woman, but further promote their worth and build towards equality. There are also a few opinionated reviews and articles that further support and analyze the feministic pattern that is apparent in Atwood’s writing. For instance, Gloria Onley comments that Atwood’s poems concern “modern woman’s anguish at finding herself isolated and exploited by the imposition of a sex role power structure.” With the recurring theme of finding female identity in a corrupt world, Margaret Atwood’s poetry openly and freely describes the repressed inner thoughts of the suppressed female.
In “They Eat Out” (1976), Atwood describes the sociocultural ineq...
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...the house which tantamount to slamming the lodger’s [tenant’s] days, the days she would have spent in productive work.” Here, Karmakar theorizes Atwood’s premeditated motivation of female repression. Additionally, the narrator’s words are then directed towards describing the landlady’s jurisdiction over his own life. The above nuisances symbolize how the female influence on men, need them be described as monsters for an effective meaning, is becoming stronger. The poem then gears towards the tenant’s inability to escape his landlady’s overpowering control. This inability to escape symbolizes that the fearful female power symbolized here, as well as seen in todays society, is here to stay regardless of any male opposition. In this poem, Atwood thematically describes an innovative, compelling, and empowering attitude towards strengthening the female identity of today.
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