Feminism, By Jane Austen

1314 WordsOct 23, 20146 Pages
In the novel, Emma, Austen presents a view of feminism that, at this point in time is quite outstanding for her to do. Men were the dominant gender and in England women remained submissive to the men at all times. Women had specific roles in the household and in society. When the girls are young, they are expected to obey their fathers until they are grown and passed off to a husband so they are financially supported at all times during their life. Emma is a story about the everyday life of Emma Woodhouse and her circle of family, friends, and acquaintances in a small town where nothing special ever seems to happen. On the surface it seems to be just a story about everyday life in the village of Highbury. However, there is an underlying tone that Austen portrays as a writer hiding behind her work to get through to the public of another social issue she wants to make known in the world. This issue is women’s rights.Jane Austen was by not a radical feminist by today’s standards, but she was indeed a feminist for her time period. Feminism as a defined term seems to be a relatively new concept but in fact has been around as long as women. They have worked within their confines to make their voices and opinions known. Austen has done this through her writing. In Emma, Jane Austen addresses many issues important to women, making her a feminist of her time. Most critics such as when reading this book take an this point of view because that is what it was meant to be written as.
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