Essay on Woman at Point Zero by Nawal El Saadawi

Essay on Woman at Point Zero by Nawal El Saadawi

Length: 1294 words (3.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Captivity in Woman at Point Zero by Nawal El Saadawi, is a strongly emphasized theme. Fideaus the protagonist is constantly constrained and surveilled within the realms of the Egyptian society subsequently being emotionally, and twice literally, captive. The significance of captivity in Woman at Point Zero is not only for plot or dramatic effect. In the writing of Woman At Point Zero Nawal El Saadawi wishes to inform the reader about the captivity felt by some women in suppressive countries. In this way, she means the protagonist Firdaus to not only represent one woman but many. Captivity in Woman at Point Zero is not only that of the literal, lock and key. Throughout the novel Firdaus is subject to varying forms of captivity, emotionally from societal expectations, mentally and physically in both jail and as a literal prisoner of Bayoumi. Further captivity is introduced to the reader through use of an 'eyes' motif to show how, in Firduses societal paradigm she was and felt, constantly surveilled by the Egyptian patriarchal society.

Throughout Firdauses life she is subject also to degrees and different forms of captivity as a child under control of her parents she finds herself 'powerless', furthermore she is captive in an arranged marriage to her husband Sheikh Mahmoud in his, and societies social expectations for her behaviors a married woman. She later describes as herself and other women as having been 'bind them in marriage and chastise them with menial service for life' The verb bind is directly connotative of a physical captivity that one is desperate to be free from, it is also adds to the negative tone, showing that marriage was a hardy, difficult trap, almost impossible to flee. Despite marriage not generally being ...

... middle of paper ...

...t of Firdaus and also allows better understanding of her motives and desperation to be free, having been surveilled and captive all her life. The theme of captivity is significant in making readers question their own lifestyles as Firdaus does, either making us count our blessings or query as to if we are all captive in some smaller way. By repeating the theme of captivity in a variety of ways throughout, El Saadawi furthermore ensures it is brought to the readers full attention, provoking us either into action to ensure less captivity for women like Firdaus or into guilt over our assumedly freer lives. The continually captive and oppressed Firdaus is symbolic of any woman today subject to captivity and injustices from their societies, and in a world where this continually occurs this theme is both universally significant and relevant in the modern societies today.

Need Writing Help?

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

Check your paper »

Woman At Point Zero By Nawal El Saadawi Essay

- The book Woman at Point Zero, written by Nawal El Saadawi is a tragic one. Based upon a true story, it focuses on the woman named Firdaus and her life story. Taking place in Egypt during the mid ‘70s, Firdaus’ life is filled with dread and despair from beginning to end. Being a woman is the only thing stopping Firdaus from being the dominant, independant person we learn that she is. Yet the harsh reality is that all women in egypt at this time are treated like objects, used only for sex and slave-like tasks....   [tags: Woman, Gender, Female, Human sexuality]

Strong Essays
1037 words (3 pages)

The Novel Woman at Point Zero by Nawal El Saadawi Essay

- The novel Woman at Point Zero by Nawal El Saadawi and the article “With Tasers and placards, the women of Egypt are fighting back against sexism” by Laurie Penny can be connected both internally in regards to the text and outwardly to the time and place surrounding the novel and article. Although Woman at Point Zero provides a fictional journey, one that is at heart and by inspiration very genuine, the ideas incorporated into this novel are just as authentic as those provided by the first hand account given by Laurie Penny....   [tags: women's discrimination and oppression in Egypt]

Strong Essays
1221 words (3.5 pages)

Woman at Point Zero by Nawal El Saadawi Essay

- In what ways are power and control significant throughout Firdaus’ life, and how does she utilize this power and control. Nawal El Saadawi’s Woman at Point Zero is a significantly direct, sharp-cutting novel. It gives rise to some extreme emotions of agitation and outrage towards the nature of humans, in particular men and their maltreatment of women. This novel left me shocked, upset and angry at not only the antagonists in the book, but also society and the blind eye it so often turns towards abuse....   [tags: women struggles, fridaus' life]

Strong Essays
1203 words (3.4 pages)

Essay on Woman At Point Zero by Nawal El Saadawi

- Firdaus sheds her last grain of virtue. In doing so, she realizes the truth of her society. Seeing what a woman is and does in Egypt, her home, she sees the only way out of the situation. Firdaus, through her desire to be become a human being who was not looked upon with discontent; she finds that a successful prostitute was better than a misled saint. Throughout her life, Firdaus had incurred the abuse that her society inflicted on women. Firstly, her father treating her not wrongly, but the way that daughters had always been treated....   [tags: Nawal El Saadawi Point Zero]

Strong Essays
1089 words (3.1 pages)

Essay Symbolism of Money in Woman at Point Zero by Nawal El Saadawi

- Woman At Point Zero: Symbolism of Money The novel “Woman at Point Zero” by Nawal El Saadawi tells the tale of a woman, named Firdaus being interviewed by a journalist before her execution. She is in prison on the charge of murdering a man, in an extremely sexist culture, which has a lot of disparity between men and women. One of the recurring symbols in the novel was that of money. Money was a very negative symbol in the novel, and it was highlighted by Firdaus that one could not possess both money and integrity....   [tags: freedom, power]

Strong Essays
1165 words (3.3 pages)

Analysis Of Nawal El Saadawi 's Woman At Point Zero Essay

- Nawal El Saadawi’s Woman at Point Zero is a novel that takes place near Cairo, Egypt and is mostly written in the point of view of a girl named Firdaus. Growing up, Firdaus was physically and emotionally abused by her father and occasionally her mother as well. As she got older, she began to be sexually abused by her uncle along with many other men she would be introduced to throughout the story. However, these forms of abuse are not subjective to Firdaus. Quite a few women are introduced in this text and almost every single one of them mentions or hints that they’ve experienced abuse as well....   [tags: Gender, Woman, Gender role, Domestic violence]

Strong Essays
1002 words (2.9 pages)

A Comparison of the Heat and Cold Imagery Used in Woman at Point Zero and Thousand Cranes

- A Comparison of the Heat and Cold Imagery Used in Woman at Point Zero and Thousand Cranes In the books Woman at Point Zero by Nawal El Saadawi, and Thousand Cranes by Yasunari Kawabata, both authors use various forms of imagery that reoccur throughout the works. These images are used not to be taken for their literal meanings, but instead to portray a deeper sense or feeling that may occur several times in the book. One type of imagery that both Saadawi and Kawabata use in their works is heat and cold imagery....   [tags: Nawal El Saadawi Yasunari Kawabata Essays]

Strong Essays
1136 words (3.2 pages)

Essay on Women and Sex by Nawal El Saadawi

- Nawal El Saadawi was born in 1931, in a village called Kafr Tahla, which is located in Cairo, Egypt. She was born into a poor family being the second eldest of nine other children, and as a result when growing up, money was always scarce in her household. Her father, who was a government official, had always encouraged Nawal to study the Arabic language. He also strove the teach the young lady about self-respect, and at the same time told her that it was okay to speak her mind, and that she should always stand up for what she believed in....   [tags: biography, ethnic minorities]

Strong Essays
760 words (2.2 pages)

Essay on Chinua Achebe 's Things Fall Apart, And Nawal El Saadawi

- Throughout this semester, we have learned many different techniques that authors use when writing African stories. These techniques include rites of passage, myths, the characters of trickster and hero, and many others. One of the important things that was taught in the very beginning of the semester about African stories was that authors use these techniques in stories to make different kinds of social commentary. There are two authors in particular that have stood out in their use of heroes in order to comment on gender roles in society....   [tags: Things Fall Apart, Chinua Achebe, Gender role]

Strong Essays
1260 words (3.6 pages)

Woman At Point Zero And Pillars Of Salt Essay

- The female body is simply a vessel that a patriarchal society makes use of or suppresses for their own agenda in the race to obtaining power. Unlike a man, a woman occupies her appropriate place in a patriarchal society with the predetermined notion that her sexual services are appropriately reserved in obedience to the patriarchal prerogative. Her virtue lies in what she does and does not do. In the two novels, Woman at Point Zero and Pillars of Salt, the female characters seek to expose and condemn the ideological trappings which pacify patriarchal societies....   [tags: Sociology, Gender, Patriarchy, Gender role]

Strong Essays
1417 words (4 pages)