Georgina’s Struggle for Freedom in The Cook, the Thief, his Wife and her Lover

Georgina’s Struggle for Freedom in The Cook, the Thief, his Wife and her Lover

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Georgina’s Struggle for Freedom in The Cook, the Thief, his Wife and her Lover  

   In his work "The Cook, the Thief, his Wife and her Lover", Peter Greenaway displays the complexity of his main character Georgina. We witness her constant struggle to break free from her hateful and disgusting husband. She realizes her pernicious dependence on Albert. His coercion, oppression and abuse make Georgina's life unbearable. Her need for freedom is expressed in her involvement in a sexual relation with a man completely different from her husband and his cronies. Their relationship begins silently and is based almost entirely on sex. Sex gave her a measure of control in a world in which her real influence was limited and problematic (Giddens, p.70). The happiness that the lovers derive from the closeness, affection and tenderness of their sexuality are things that Georgina was missing in her inauthentic life. Passion appears as a strong element in their liaison and till the circumstances allowed them to make love unnoticed, their relationship was a carefree and happy experience. When their affair was discovered by Georgina's husband and Michael was afterwards brutally killed, Georgina is left with her confused feelings, unable to assess the real value of the relationship she had with Michael.



In the situation of Georgina there is a sentient need for a creative and rewarding relationship. This physical-psychological desire, however, does not have love as the basis of a long-term, deep emotional relationship between two individuals (Goldman, Philosophy of Sex, pp. 78-79). It is more the bodily desire for the body of another that dominates her mental life (Goldman, Philosophy of Sex, p. 76). In the Georgina's need for...

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Works Cited

Greenaway, Peter. "The Cook, the Thief, his Wife and her Lover". Dis Voir. Paris, 1989.

Singer, Irving. The Pursuit of Love. The John Hopkins University Press. London, 1994.

Soble, Alan., edited by. The Philosophy of Sex. Contemporary Readings. Revised Second Edition. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 1991.

Rank, Otto. Beyond Psychology. Dover Publications. New York. Copyright (c) 1941 by Estelle B. Rank. 1958.

Lepp, Ignace. The Psychology of Loving. Translated by Bernard B. Gilligan. A Mentor Book from New American Library, Times Mirror. New York, 1963.

Giddens, Anthony. The Transformation of Intimacy. Sexuality, Love and Eroticism in Modern Societies. Stanford University Press. Stanford CA, 1992.

Schneider, David J. Social Psychology. University of Texas, San Antonio. Addison Wesley Publishing Company, 1976.


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