An Analysis of 'The Drover's Wife'

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The Drover's Wife Sec. 1. A contemporary reading of The Drover's Wife suggests that the author, Henry Lawson, is engaging in a little misdirection. That is to say that the title of the story deemphasizes the principal character's autonomy by referring to her as the wife of a hapless drover instead of the fearless, rugged, self-reliant woman she proves to be. The idea that she belongs to the drover, that she is his property (as opposed to him being her husband/property) is a hard pill to swallow after the reader learns of her exploits in the unforgiving bush. After all, she spend the majority of her time alone, she is raising the children, she - along with the fierce yellow dog - are protecting the home front from drifters and serpents and presumably whatever else the bellicose bush throws at her. The point is, this story, if written in today's post-feminist milieu, would be called "The Bushwoman" or something of that nature, not the Drover's wife. Her toughness, her calloused existence, is made apparent in the following lines, "But this bushwoman is used to the loneliness of it. As a girl-wife she hated it, but now she would feel strange away from it." She's no longer a 'girl-wife,' she's no longer defined by her nuptial agreement; she's a bona fide bushwoman. (Bonus: I personally love the following description of Alligator, it's probably my favorite part of any of the three stories, "He sometimes makes friends with strangers. He hates snakes and has killed

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