Feminism Critical Anthology

Good Essays
Aleksandra Warpas
‘Duffy’s collection The World’s Wife is nothing but feminist propaganda’. Consider this view in the light of your readings of Delilah and Anne Hathaway.

In The World’s Wife Carol Ann Duffy explores ‘the blinding effects of ideology’; the inequalities between men and women, and how women are portrayed in literature which stereotypically would be either the ‘dangerous seductress’, ‘cute but essentially helpless’, ‘unworldly’ or the ‘self-sacrificing angel’ as stated by Bertens. Feminists stress the utmost concern towards gender divisions in society and although Duffy portrays this division I do not agree that The World’s Wife is nothing but feminist propaganda. The noun ‘propaganda’ suggests that her work is agenda
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Being caring is seen as a very feminine trait in literature therefore by teaching ‘Samson’ he seems to display gentleness and vulnerability in asking her to do so. Through this Duffy is suggesting that both men and women are victims of gender stereotyping and forceful conformity which supports the idea that The World’s Wife is not simply feminist propaganda but ‘exploring the nature of the female world and outlook’. Furthermore, the use of hyphens at the end of each line create a lack of metrical regularity even though there is rhyme, ‘said’ and ‘bed’; this could be interpreted as ‘Samson’s uncertainty in displaying his emotions as stereotypically in literature it’s the women which exhibit their feelings, through this Duffy may be exploring the idea whether men and women are ‘essentially’ different due to biology or they are simply socially constructed to be different.
Aleksandra Warpas

Another interpretation of this could be of the feminist frustration to conform to gender stereotypes, there is rhyme but it is strained, just as females that are being forced into conformity. Furthermore, in Delilah, Duffy uses Delilah in order to embody how women should reject the idea that women are the one’s who are powerless and
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